Miao, Yinglong; Baudry, Jerome; Smith, Jeremy C.; McCammon, J. Andrew
General trends of dihedral conformational transitions in a globular protein

Dihedral conformational transitions are analyzed systematically in a model globular protein, cytochrome P450cam, to examine their structural and chemical dependences through combined conventional molecular dynamics (cMD), accelerated molecular dynamics (aMD) and adaptive biasing force (ABF) simulations. The aMD simulations are performed at two acceleration levels, using dihedral and dual boost, respectively. In comparison with cMD, aMD samples protein dihedral transitions approximately two times faster on average using dihedral boost, and approximate to 3.5 times faster using dual boost. In the protein backbone, significantly higher dihedral transition rates are observed in the bend, coil, and turn flexible regions, followed by the bridge and sheet, and then the helices. Moreover, protein side chains of greater length exhibit higher transition rates on average in the aMD-enhanced sampling. Side chains of the same length (particularly N=2) exhibit decreasing transition rates with residues when going from hydrophobic to polar, then charged and aromatic chemical types. The reduction of dihedral transition rates is found to be correlated with increasing energy barriers as identified through ABF free energy calculations. These general trends of dihedral conformational transitions provide important insights into the hierarchical dynamics and complex free energy landscapes of functional proteins. Proteins 2016; 84:501-514. (c) 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.


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