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Chem Pharm Bull (Tokyo). 2016;64(9):1393-6. doi: 10.1248/cpb.c16-00132.

Molecular Dynamics Simulations to Determine the Structure and Dynamics of Hepatitis B Virus Capsid Bound to a Novel Anti-viral Drug.

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School of Science, Kitasato University.


Hepatitis B virus (HBV) chronically infects millions of people worldwide and is a major cause of serious liver diseases, including liver cirrhosis and liver cancer. In our previous study, in silico screening was used to isolate new anti-viral compounds predicted to bind to the HBV capsid. Four of the isolated compounds have been reported to suppress the cellular multiplication of HBV experimentally. In the present study, molecular dynamics simulations of the HBV capsid were performed under rotational symmetry boundary conditions, to clarify how the structure and dynamics of the capsid are affected at the atomic level by the binding of one of the isolated compounds, C13. Two simulations of the free HBV capsid, two further simulations of the capsid-C13 complex, and one simulation of the capsid-AT-130 complex were performed. For statistical confidence, each set of simulations was repeated by five times, changing the simulation conditions. C13 continued to bind at the predicted binding site during the simulations, supporting the hypothesis that C13 is a capsid-binding compound. The structure and dynamics of the HBV capsid were greatly influenced by the binding and release of C13, and these effects were essentially identical to those seen for AT-130, indicating that C13 likely inhibits the function of the HBV capsid.

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