Improved prediction of HIV-1 protease-inhibitor binding energies by molecular dynamics simulations

Jenwitheesuk, Ekachai; Samudrala, Ram
January 2003
BMC Structural Biology;2003, Vol. 3, p2
Academic Journal
Background: The accurate prediction of enzyme-substrate interaction energies is one of the major challenges in computational biology. This study describes the improvement of protein-ligand binding energy prediction by incorporating protein flexibility through the use of molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Results: Docking experiments were undertaken using the program AutoDock for twenty-five HIV-1 protease-inhibitor complexes determined by x-ray crystallography. Protein-rigid docking without any dynamics produced a low correlation of 0.38 between the experimental and calculated binding energies. Correlations improved significantly for all time scales of MD simulations of the receptor-ligand complex. The highest correlation coefficient of 0.87 between the experimental and calculated energies was obtained after 0.1 picoseconds of dynamics simulation. Conclusion: Our results indicate that relaxation of protein complexes by MD simulation is useful and necessary to obtain binding energies that are representative of the experimentally determined values.


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