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J Chem Inf Model. 2015 Aug 24;55(8):1600-15. doi: 10.1021/acs.jcim.5b00333. Epub 2015 Jul 17.

Detection of Binding Site Molecular Interaction Field Similarities.

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Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Sherbrooke , 12e Avenue Nord, Sherbrooke, J1H 5N4 Qu├ębec, Canada.


Protein binding-site similarity detection methods can be used to predict protein function and understand molecular recognition, as a tool in drug design for drug repurposing and polypharmacology, and for the prediction of the molecular determinants of drug toxicity. Here, we present IsoMIF, a method able to identify binding site molecular interaction field similarities across protein families. IsoMIF utilizes six chemical probes and the detection of subgraph isomorphisms to identify geometrically and chemically equivalent sections of protein cavity pairs. The method is validated using six distinct data sets, four of those previously used in the validation of other methods. The mean area under the receiver operator curve (AUC) obtained across data sets for IsoMIF is higher than those of other methods. Furthermore, while IsoMIF obtains consistently high AUC values across data sets, other methods perform more erratically across data sets. IsoMIF can be used to predict function from structure, to detect potential cross-reactivity or polypharmacology targets, and to help suggest bioisosteric replacements to known binding molecules. Given that IsoMIF detects spatial patterns of molecular interaction field similarities, its predictions are directly related to pharmacophores and may be readily translated into modeling decisions in structure-based drug design. IsoMIF may in principle detect similar binding sites with distinct amino acid arrangements that lead to equivalent interactions within the cavity. The source code to calculate and visualize MIFs and MIF similarities are freely available.

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