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Proteins. 2001 Dec 1;45(4):456-70.

Hierarchy of simulation models in predicting molecular recognition mechanisms from the binding energy landscapes: structural analysis of the peptide complexes with SH2 domains.

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Agouron Pharmaceuticals, Inc., San Diego, California 92121-1111, USA.


Computer simulations using the simplified energy function and simulated tempering dynamics have accurately determined the native structure of the pYVPML, SVLpYTAVQPNE, and SPGEpYVNIEF peptides in the complexes with SH2 domains. Structural and equilibrium aspects of the peptide binding with SH2 domains have been studied by generating temperature-dependent binding free energy landscapes. Once some native peptide-SH2 domain contacts are constrained, the underlying binding free energy profile has the funnel-like shape that leads to a rapid and consistent acquisition of the native structure. The dominant native topology of the peptide-SH2 domain complexes represents an extended peptide conformation with strong specific interactions in the phosphotyrosine pocket and hydrophobic interactions of the peptide residues C-terminal to the pTyr group. The topological features of the peptide-protein interface are primarily determined by the thermodynamically stable phosphotyrosyl group. A diversity of structurally different binding orientations has been observed for the amino-terminal residues to the phosphotyrosine. The dominant native topology for the peptide residues carboxy-terminal to the phosphotyrosine is tolerant to flexibility in this region of the peptide-SH2 domain interface observed in equilibrium simulations. The energy landscape analysis has revealed a broad, entropically favorable topology of the native binding mode for the bound peptides, which is robust to structural perturbations. This could provide an additional positive mechanism underlying tolerance of the SH2 domains to hydrophobic conservative substitutions in the peptide specificity region.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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