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Int J Mol Sci. 2013 Jul 9;14(7):14225-39. doi: 10.3390/ijms140714225.

Novel hybrid virtual screening protocol based on molecular docking and structure-based pharmacophore for discovery of methionyl-tRNA synthetase inhibitors as antibacterial agents.

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  • 1State Key Laboratory of Biotherapy, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, Sichuan, China.


Methione tRNA synthetase (MetRS) is an essential enzyme involved in protein biosynthesis in all living organisms and is a potential antibacterial target. In the current study, the structure-based pharmacophore (SBP)-guided method has been suggested to generate a comprehensive pharmacophore of MetRS based on fourteen crystal structures of MetRS-inhibitor complexes. In this investigation, a hybrid protocol of a virtual screening method, comprised of pharmacophore model-based virtual screening (PBVS), rigid and flexible docking-based virtual screenings (DBVS), is used for retrieving new MetRS inhibitors from commercially available chemical databases. This hybrid virtual screening approach was then applied to screen the Specs (202,408 compounds) database, a structurally diverse chemical database. Fifteen hit compounds were selected from the final hits and shifted to experimental studies. These results may provide important information for further research of novel MetRS inhibitors as antibacterial agents.

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