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J Mol Model. 2013 Nov;19(11):4919-30. doi: 10.1007/s00894-013-1981-y. Epub 2013 Sep 17.

Molecular interactions between fenoterol stereoisomers and derivatives and the β₂-adrenergic receptor binding site studied by docking and molecular dynamics simulations.

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Laboratory of Medicinal Chemistry and Neuroengineering, Medical University of Lublin, ul. Chodzki 4a, 20-093, Lublin, Poland.


The β2 adrenergic receptor (β2-AR) has become a model system for studying the ligand recognition process and mechanism of the G protein coupled receptors activation. In the present study stereoisomers of fenoterol and some of its derivatives (N = 94 molecules) were used as molecular probes to identify differences in stereo-recognition interactions between β2-AR and structurally similar agonists. The present study aimed at determining the 3D molecular models of the fenoterol derivative-β2-AR complexes. Molecular models of β2-AR have been developed by using the crystal structure of the human β2-AR T4 lysozyme fusion protein with bound (S)-carazolol (PDB ID: 2RH1) and more recently reported structure of a nanobody-stabilized active state of the β2-AR with the bound full agonist BI-167107 (PDB ID: 3P0G). The docking procedure allowed us to study the similarities and differences in the recognition binding site(s) for tested ligands. The agonist molecules occupied the same binding region, between TM III, TM V, TM VI and TM VII. The residues identified by us during docking procedure (Ser203, Ser207, Asp113, Lys305, Asn312, Tyr308, Asp192) were experimentally indicated in functional and biophysical studies as being very important for the agonist-receptor interactions. Moreover, the additional space, an extension of the orthosteric pocket, was identified and described. Furthermore, the molecular dynamics simulations were used to study the molecular mechanism of interaction between ligands ((R,R')- and (S,S')-fenoterol) and β2-AR. Our research offers new insights into the ligand stereoselective interaction with one of the most important GPCR member. This study may also facilitate the design of improved selective medications, which can be used to treat, prevent and control heart failure symptoms.

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