The structure of human protein HSPC034 has been determined by both solution NMR spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography. Refinement of the NMR structure ensemble, using a Rosetta protocol in the absence of NMR restraints, resulted in significant improvements not only in structure quality, but also in molecular replacement (MR) performance with the raw X-ray diffraction data using MOLREP and Phaser. This method has recently been shown to be generally applicable with improved MR performance demonstrated for eight NMR structures refined using Rosetta.1 Additionally, NMR structures of HSPC034 calculated by standard methods that include NMR restraints, have improvements in the RMSD to the crystal structure and MR performance in the order DYANA, CYANA, XPLOR-NIH, and CNS with explicit water refinement (CNSw). Further Rosetta refinement of the CNSw structures, perhaps due to more thorough conformational sampling and/or a superior force field, was capable of finding alternative low energy protein conformations that were equally consistent with the NMR data according to the RPF scores. Upon further examination, the additional MR-performance shortfall for NMR refined structures as compared to the X-ray structure MR performance were attributed, in part, to crystal-packing effects, real structural differences, and inferior hydrogen bonding in the NMR structures. A good correlation between a decrease in the number of buried unsatisfied hydrogen-bond donors and improved MR performance demonstrates the importance of hydrogen-bond terms in the force field for improving NMR structures. The superior hydrogen-bond network in Rosetta-refined structures, demonstrates that correct identification of hydrogen bonds should be a critical goal of NMR structure refinement. Inclusion of non-bivalent hydrogen bonds identified from Rosetta structures as additional restraints in the structure calculation results in NMR structures with improved MR performance
NMR; X-ray; HSPC034; PP25; C1orf41; Northeast Structural Genomics Consortium; structural genomics; comparison of NMR and X-ray structures; Rosetta; NMR force field refinement; molecular replacement; hydrogen bonding; X-ray crystallography; refinement methods
To fully describe the fold space and ultimately the biological function of membrane proteins, it is necessary to determine the specific interactions of the protein with the membrane. This property of membrane proteins that we refer to as structural topology cannot be resolved using X-ray crystallography or solution NMR alone. In this article, we incorporate into XPLOR-NIH a hybrid objective function for membrane protein structure determination that utilizes solution and solid-state NMR restraints, simultaneously defining structure, topology, and depth of insertion. Distance and angular restraints obtained from solution NMR of membrane proteins solubilized in detergent micelles are combined with backbone orientational restraints (chemical shift anisotropy and dipolar couplings) derived from solid-state NMR in aligned lipid bilayers. In addition, a supplementary knowledge-based potential, Ez (insertion depth potential), is used to ensure the correct positioning of secondary structural elements with respect to a virtual membrane. The hybrid objective function is minimized using a simulated annealing protocol implemented into XPLOR-NIH software for general use.
Hybrid method; Membrane protein; Molecular modeling; Structural topology; PISEMA; Solid-state NMR
High-resolution solid-state NMR spectroscopy can provide structural information of proteins that cannot be studied by X-ray crystallography or solution NMR spectroscopy. Here we demonstrate that it is possible to determine a protein structure by solid-state NMR to a resolution comparable to that by solution NMR. Using an iterative assignment and structure calculation protocol, a large number of distance restraints was extracted from 1H/1H mixing experiments recorded on a single uniformly labeled sample under magic angle spinning conditions. The calculated structure has a coordinate precision of 0.6 Å and 1.3 Å for the backbone and side chain heavy atoms, respectively, and deviates from the structure observed in solution. The approach is expected to be applicable to larger systems enabling the determination of high-resolution structures of amyloid or membrane proteins.
Protein-biomineral interactions are paramount to materials production in biology, including the mineral phase of hard tissue. Unfortunately, the structure of biomineral-associated proteins cannot be determined by X-ray crystallography or solution NMR. Here we report a method for determining the structure of biomineral-associated proteins. The method combines solid-state NMR (ssNMR) and ssNMR-biased computational structure prediction. In addition, the algorithm is able to identify lattice geometries most compatible with ssNMR constraints, representing a quantitative, novel method for investigating crystal-face binding specificity. We use this new method to determine most of the structure of human salivary statherin interacting with the mineral phase of tooth enamel. Computation and experiment converge on an ensemble of related structures and identify preferential binding at three crystal surfaces. The work represents a significant advance toward determining structure of biomineral-adsorbed protein using experimentally biased structure prediction. This method is generally applicable to proteins that can be chemically synthesized.
We demonstrate that short, medium and long-range constraints can be extracted from proton mediated, rare-spin detected correlation solid-state NMR experiments for the microcrystalline 10.4 × 2 kDa dimeric model protein Crh. Magnetization build-up curves from cross signals in NHHC and CHHC spectra deliver detailed information on side chain conformers and secondary structure for interactions between spin pairs. A large number of medium and long-range correlations can be observed in the spectra, and an analysis of the resolved signals reveals that the constraints cover the entire sequence, also including inter-monomer contacts between the two molecules forming the domain-swapped Crh dimer. Dynamic behavior is shown to have an impact on cross signals intensities, as indicated for mobile residues or regions by contacts predicted from the crystal structure, but absent in the spectra. Our work validates strategies involving proton distance measurements for large and complex proteins as the Crh dimer, and confirms the magnetization transfer properties previously described for small molecules in solid protein samples.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s10858-008-9229-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Catabolite repression histidine-containing phosphocarrier protein (Crh); Distance constraints; MAS; 3D Protein structure; Solid-state NMR spectroscopy
Complete understanding of the folding process that connects a structurally disordered state of a protein to an ordered, biochemically functional state requires detailed characterization of intermediate structural states with high resolution and site specificity. While the intrinsically inhomogeneous and dynamic nature of unfolded and partially folded states limits the efficacy of traditional x-ray diffraction and solution NMR in structural studies, solid state NMR methods applied to frozen solutions can circumvent the complications due to molecular motions and conformational exchange encountered in unfolded and partially folded states. Moreover, solid state NMR methods can provide both qualitative and quantitative structural information at the site-specific level, even in the presence of structural inhomogeneity. This article reviews relevant solid state NMR methods and their initial applications to protein folding studies. Using either chemical denaturation to prepare unfolded states at equilibrium or a rapid freezing apparatus to trap non-equilibrium, transient structural states on a sub-millisecond time scale, recent results demonstrate that solid state NMR can contribute essential information about folding processes that is not available from more familiar biophysical methods.
protein folding; freeze-trapping; chemical denaturation; conformational ensembles; solid state NMR; villin; HP35
X-ray diffraction and Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectroscopy (NMR) are the staple methods for revealing atomic structures of proteins. Since crystals of biomolecular assemblies and membrane proteins often diffract weakly and such large systems encroach upon the molecular tumbling limit of solution NMR, new methods are essential to extend structures of such systems to high resolution. Here we present a method that incorporates solid-state NMR restraints alongside of X-ray reflections into the conventional model building and refinement steps of structure calculations. Using the 3.7 Å crystal structure of the integral membrane protein complex DsbB-DsbA as a test case yielded a significantly improved backbone precision of 0.92 Å in the transmembrane region, a 58% enhancement from using X-ray reflections alone. Furthermore, addition of solid-state NMR restraints greatly improved the overall quality of the structure by promoting 22% of DsbB transmembrane residues into the most favored regions of Ramachandran space in comparison to the crystal structure. This method is widely applicable to any protein system where X-ray data are available, and is particularly useful for the study of weakly diffracting crystals.
membrane protein; solid-state NMR; X-ray reflections; high resolution; joint calculation
Structural crystallography and Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy are the predominant techniques for understanding the biological world on a molecular level. Crystallography is constrained by the ability to form a crystal that diffracts well and NMR is constrained to smaller proteins. While powerful techniques they leave many soluble, purified protein samples structurally uncharacterized. Small Angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS) is a solution technique that provides data on the size and multiple conformations of a sample, and can be used to reconstruct a low resolution molecular envelope of a macromolecule. In this study SAXS has been used in a high-throughput manner on a subset of 28 proteins where structural information is available from crystallographic and/or NMR techniques. These crystallographic and NMR structures were used to validate the accuracy of molecular envelopes reconstructed from SAXS data on a statistical level, to compare and highlight complementary structural information that SAXS provides, and to leverage biological information derived by crystallographers and spectroscopists from their structures. All of the ab initio molecular envelopes calculated from the SAXS data agree well with the available structural information. SAXS is a powerful albeit low-resolution technique that can provide additional structural information in a high-throughput and complementary manner to improve the functional interpretation of high-resolution structures.
The 1H, 13C, and 15N NMR spectra of neutral and protonated forms of the nucleosides 1-methyladenosine (m1A), 7-methylguanosine (m7G) and ethenoadenosine (EA), as a model compound, have been analyzed in order to assign the site of protonation in m1A and m7G. Protonation of these nucleosides occurs in the pyrimidine ring of m1A and EA and in the imidazole ring of m7G, with the charge being distributed rather than localized. Structural differences for both m1A and m7G were observed in solution and compared with those existing in the crystal state of monomers as well as in tRNA where these nucleosides occur quite often. The protonated nucleoside structures in solution compared favorably in sugar pucker and glycosidic bond conformations with x-ray crystallographic data. Methyl group carbon chemical shifts of the protonated mononucleosides corresponded to those of the methyls of the respective nucleosides in native tRNA structures. Therefore, the tRNA methyl group carbon chemical shifts are indicative of fully protonated nucleosides in the native, three dimensional structure of the nucleic acid.
To expand the potential conformational space available to the polypyrroline structural motif, an open chain, D,L-alternating hexapyrrolinone was designed and synthesized. Structural studies, including solution NMR and X-Ray crystallographic analysis, revealed that the hexapyrrolinone adopts a turn conformation both in solution and in the solid state, with aggregation in solution and a nanotube-like quaternary structure in the crystal.
The structure of T-2 toxin in the solid-state is limited to X-ray crystallographic studies, which lack sufficient resolution to provide direct evidence for hydrogen-bonding interactions. Furthermore, its solution-structure, despite extensive Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) studies, has provided little insight into its hydrogen-bonding behavior, thus far. Hydrogen-bonding interactions are often an important part of biological activity. In order to study these interactions, the structure of T-2 toxin was compared in both the solution- and solid-state using NMR Spectroscopy. It was determined that the solution- and solid-state structure differ dramatically, as indicated by differences in their carbon chemical shifts, these observations are further supported by solution proton spectral parameters and exchange behavior. The slow chemical exchange process and cross-relaxation dynamics with water observed between the hydroxyl hydrogen on C-3 and water supports the existence of a preferential hydrogen bonding interaction on the opposite side of the molecule from the epoxide ring, which is known to be essential for trichothecene toxicity. This result implies that these hydrogen-bonding interactions could play an important role in the biological function of T-2 toxin and posits towards a possible interaction for the trichothecene class of toxins and the ribosome. These findings clearly illustrate the importance of utilizing solid-state NMR for the study of biological compounds, and suggest that a more detailed study of this whole class of toxins, namely trichothecenes, should be pursued using this methodology.
T-2 toxin; trichothecene; NMR; hydrogen-bonding; ribosome; toxin; epoxide; water bridging; deuterium exchange; chemical exchange
The axial conformer of several 4-substituted cyclohexanone hydrazone salts was found to predominate in solution. Changes in the charge of the molecule and the polarity of the solvent led to changes in the conformational preference of each molecule that was consistent with electrostatic stabilization of the axial conformer. 1H NMR spectroscopic analysis was utilized to determine the structure of cyclohexanone-derived substrates by comparison to conformationally restricted trans-decalone derivatives and computational models. X-ray crystallography demonstrated that the axial configuration of a pendant benzyloxy group is the preferred conformation of an iminium ion in the solid state. The structure of a neutral hydrazone was also determined to favor the axial configuration for a pendant benzyloxy group in the solid state.
The solid-state NMR orientation-dependent frequencies measured for membrane proteins in macroscopically oriented lipid bilayers provide precise orientation restraints for structure determination in membranes. Here we show that this information can also be used to supplement crystallographic structural data to establish the orientation of a membrane protein in the membrane. This is achieved by incorporating a few orientation restraints, measured for the Escherichia coli outer membrane protein OmpX in magnetically oriented lipid bilayers (bicelles), in a simulated annealing calculation with the coordinates of the OmpX crystal structure. The 1H–15N dipolar couplings measured for the seven Phe residues of OmpX in oriented bilayers can be assigned by back-calculation of the NMR spectrum from the crystal structure and are sufficient to establish the three-dimensional orientation of the protein in the membrane, while the 15N chemical shifts provide a measure of cross-validation for the analysis. In C14 lipid bilayers, OmpX adopts a transmembrane orientation with a 7° tilt of its β-barrel axis relative to the membrane normal, matching the hydrophobic thickness of the barrel with that of the membrane.
The classic 18.5 kDa isoform of myelin basic protein (MBP) is central to maintaining the structural homeostasis of the myelin sheath of the central nervous system. It is an intrinsically disordered, promiscuous, multifunctional, peripheral membrane protein, whose conformation adapts to its particular environment. Its study requires the selective and complementary application of diverse approaches, of which solution and solid-state NMR spectroscopy are the most powerful to elucidate site-specific features. We review here several recent solution and solid-state NMR spectroscopic studies of 18.5 kDa MBP, and the induced partial disorder-to-order transitions that it has been demonstrated to undergo when complexed with calmodulin, actin, and phospholipid membranes.
PMID: 20453917 CAMSID: cams2553
myelin basic protein; intrinsically disordered protein; membrane protein; calmodulin; actin; lipid bilayer; NMR spectroscopy; induced folding
Conformational ensembles are increasingly recognized as a useful representation to describe fundamental relationships between protein structure, dynamics and function. Here we present an ensemble of ubiquitin in solution that is created by sampling conformational space without experimental information using “Backrub” motions inspired by alternative conformations observed in sub-Angstrom resolution crystal structures. Backrub-generated structures are then selected to produce an ensemble that optimizes agreement with nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) Residual Dipolar Couplings (RDCs). Using this ensemble, we probe two proposed relationships between properties of protein ensembles: (i) a link between native-state dynamics and the conformational heterogeneity observed in crystal structures, and (ii) a relation between dynamics of an individual protein and the conformational variability explored by its natural family. We show that the Backrub motional mechanism can simultaneously explore protein native-state dynamics measured by RDCs, encompass the conformational variability present in ubiquitin complex structures and facilitate sampling of conformational and sequence variability matching those occurring in the ubiquitin protein family. Our results thus support an overall relation between protein dynamics and conformational changes enabling sequence changes in evolution. More practically, the presented method can be applied to improve protein design predictions by accounting for intrinsic native-state dynamics.
Knowledge of protein properties is essential for enhancing the understanding and engineering of biological functions. One key property of proteins is their flexibility—their intrinsic ability to adopt different conformations. This flexibility can be measured experimentally but the measurements are indirect and computational models are required to interpret them. Here we develop a new computational method for interpreting these measurements of flexibility and use it to create a model of flexibility of the protein ubiquitin. We apply our results to show relationships between the flexibility of one protein and the diversity of structures and amino acid sequences of the protein's evolutionary family. Thus, our results show that more accurate computational modeling of protein flexibility is useful for improving prediction of a broader range of amino acid sequences compatible with a given protein. Our method will be helpful for advancing methods to rationally engineer protein functions by enabling sampling of conformational and sequence diversity similar to that of a protein's evolutionary family.
Oligomerization of human Islet Amyloid Polypeptide (IAPP) has been increasingly considered a primary pathogenic process in Type II Diabetes. Here structural features of the IAPP monomer have been probed using a combination of Ion Mobility Mass Spectrometry (IMS-MS) and all-atom Replica Exchange Molecular Dynamics (REMD) simulations. Three distinct conformational families of human IAPP monomer are observed in IMS experiments and two of them are identified as dehydrated solution structures based on our simulation results: one is an extended β-hairpin structural family and the second is a compact helix-coil structural family. The extended β-hairpin family is topologically similar to the peptide conformation in the solid state NMR fibril structure published by Tycko and coworkers. It is absent in both experiments and simulations performed on the non-amyloidogenic rat IAPP suggesting it may play an important role in the fibrillation pathway of human IAPP. In addition, pH dependence studies show the relative abundance of the β-hairpin structural family is significantly enhanced at pH 8.0. This observation is consistent with the increased rate of fibrillation at high pH in vitro and offers a possible explanation of the pH dependent fibrillation in vivo. This paper, to the best of our knowledge, presents the first experimental evidence of a significant population of β-hairpin conformers for the IAPP peptide. It is consistent with a previous suggestion in the literature that β-sheet rich oligomers are assembled from ordered β-hairpins, rather than from coiled structures.
IAPP; Amylin; β-hairpin; Ion Mobility; Replica Exchange
Detergent micelles are commonly used as solubilization agents in biophysical and biochemical studies of membrane proteins, but they do not ideally reproduce the membrane environment and often fail to support the native protein conformation. Bicelles, which are a mixture of short- and long-chain lipids, have long been suggested as a more native-like solubilizing agent for the study of membrane proteins. We tested the use of isotropic bicelles as a system for solution NMR studies of membrane proteins on a small multidrug-resistance protein (Smr), a protein that has so far resisted unambiguous structural characterization by X-ray crystallography. We show that the protein can be reconstituted in its functional form and native oligomerization state in bicelles. With an NMR assignment strategy that makes use of sequential NOE information obtained from a NOESY-TROSY and amino-acid specific information from a TROSY-HNCA experiment, 55 % of backbone HN, N and Cα resonances could be assigned, showing that isotropic bicelles are a promising system for NMR structural studies of membrane proteins and are especially suited for the study of a conformationally flexible protein like Smr.
The challenges associated with the structural characterization of disordered proteins have resulted in the application of a host of biophysical methods to such systems. NMR spectroscopy is perhaps the most readily suited technique for providing high-resolution structural information on disordered protein states in solution. Optical methods, solid state NMR, ESR and x-ray scattering can also provide valuable information regarding the ensemble of conformations sampled by disordered states. Finally, computational studies have begun to assume an increasingly important role in interpreting and extending the impact of experimental data obtained for such systems. This article discusses recent advances in the applications of these methods to intrinsically disordered proteins.
Residual dipolar couplings (RDCs) give orientational dependent NMR restraints that improve the resolution of NMR conformational ensembles and define the relative orientation of multidomain proteins and protein complexes. The interpretation of RDCs is complicated by protein dynamics and the intrinsic degeneracy of solutions that lead to ill-defined orientations of the structural domains (ghost orientations). Here, we illustrate how paramagnetic-based restraints can remove the orientational ambiguity of multidomain membrane proteins solubilized in detergent micelles. We tested this approach for the monomeric form of phospholamban (PLN), a 52-residue membrane protein, which is composed of two helical domains connected by a relatively flexible loop. We show that the combination of classical solution NMR restraints (NOEs and dihedral angles) with RDCs and PREs resolve topological ambiguities, improving the convergence of the PLN structural ensemble and giving the depth of insertion of the protein within the micelle. This combined approach will be necessary for membrane proteins, whose three-dimensional structure is strongly influenced by interactions with the membrane-mimicking environment rather than compact tertiary folds common in soluble proteins.
Structure Determination; NMR; Membrane Protein Topology; Paramagnetic Relaxation Enhancement; Residual Dipolar Couplings; Detergent Micelles; Phospholamban
Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy is a primary tool to perform structural studies of proteins in physiologically-relevant solution conditions. Restraints on distances between pairs of nuclei in the protein, derived from the nuclear Overhauser effect (NOE), provide information about the structure of the protein in its folded state. NMR studies of symmetric protein homo-oligomers present a unique challenge. Using X-filtered NOESY experiments, it is possible to determine whether an NOE restrains a pair of protons across different subunits or within a single subunit, but current experimental techniques are unable to determine in which subunits the restrained protons lie. Consequently, it is difficult to assign NOEs to particular pairs of subunits with certainty, thus hindering the structural analysis of the oligomeric state. Computational approaches are needed to address this subunit ambiguity, but traditional solutions often rely on stochastic search coupled with simulated annealing and simulations of simplified molecular dynamics, which have many tunable parameters that must be chosen carefully and can also fail to report structures consistent with the experimental restraints. In addition, these traditional approaches rarely provide guarantees on running time or solution quality. We reduce the structure determination of homo-oligomers with cyclic symmetry to computing geometric arrangements of unions of annuli in a plane. Our algorithm, disco, runs in expected O(n2) time, where n is the number of distance restraints, potentially assigned ambiguously. disco is guaranteed to report the exact set of oligomer structures consistent with the distance restraints and also with orientational restraints from residual dipolar couplings (RDCs). We demonstrate our method using two symmetric protein complexes: the trimeric E. coli diacylglycerol kinase (DAGK) and a dimeric mutant of the immunoglobulin-binding domain B1 of streptococcal protein G (GB1). In both cases, disco computes oligomer structures with high precision and also finds distance restraints that are either mutually inconsistent or inconsistent with the RDCs. The entire protocol DISCO has been completely automated in a software package that is freely available and open-source at www.cs.duke.edu/donaldlab/software.php.
algorithms; computational molecular biology; protein structure
Symmetric protein dimers, trimers, and higher-order cyclic oligomers play key roles in many biological processes. However, structural studies of oligomeric systems by solution NMR can be difficult due to slow tumbling of the system and the difficulty in identifying NOE interactions across protein interfaces. Here, we present an automated method (RosettaOligomers) for determining the solution structures of oligomeric systems using only chemical shifts, sparse NOEs, and domain orientation restraints from residual dipolar couplings (RDCs) without a need for a previously determined structure of the monomeric subunit. The method integrates previously developed Rosetta protocols for solving the structures of monomeric proteins using sparse NMR data and for predicting the structures of both nonintertwined and intertwined symmetric oligomers. We illustrated the performance of the method using a benchmark set of nine protein dimers, one trimer, and one tetramer with available experimental data and various interface topologies. The final converged structures are found to be in good agreement with both experimental data and previously published high-resolution structures. The new approach is more readily applicable to large oligomeric systems than conventional structure-determination protocols, which often require a large number of NOEs, and will likely become increasingly relevant as more high-molecular weight systems are studied by NMR.
The anisotropic spin interactions measured for membrane proteins in weakly oriented micelles and in oriented lipid bilayers provide independent and potentially complementary high-resolution restraints for structure determination. Here we show that the membrane protein CHIF adopts a similar structure in lipid micelles and bilayers, allowing the restraints from micelle and bilayer samples to be combined in a complementary fashion to enhance the structural information. Back-calculation and assignment of the NMR spectrum of CHIF in oriented lipid bilayers, from the structure determined in micelles, provides additional restraints for structure determination as well as the global orientation of the protein in the membrane. The combined use of solution and solid-state NMR restraints also affords cross-validation for the structural analysis.
All members of the human herpesvirus protease family are active as weakly associating dimers, but inactive as monomers. A small molecule allosteric inhibitor of Kaposi’s sarcoma-associated herpesvirus protease (KSHV Pr) traps the enzyme in an inactive monomeric state where the C-terminal helices are unfolded and the hydrophobic dimer interface is exposed. NMR titration studies demonstrate that the inhibitor binds to KSHV Pr monomers with low μM affinity. A 2.0 Å resolution X-ray crystal structure of a C-terminal truncated KSHV Pr-inhibitor complex locates the binding pocket at the dimer interface and displays significant conformational perturbations at the active site, 15 Å from the allosteric site. NMR and CD data suggest that the small molecule inhibits human cytomegalovirus protease (HCMV Pr) via a similar mechanism. As all HHV proteases are functionally and structurally homologous, the inhibitor represents a class of compounds that may be developed into broad-spectrum therapeutics which allosterically regulate enzymatic activity by disrupting protein-protein interactions.
NMR spectroscopy; X-ray crystallography; protein-protein interactions; small-molecule inhibitor; monomer trap
N-hydroxy amides can be found in many naturally occurring and synthetic compounds and are known to act as both strong proton donors and chelators of metal cations. We have initiated studies of peptoids, or N-substituted glycines, that contain N-hydroxy amide side chains to investigate the potential effects of these functional groups on peptoid backbone amide rotamer equilibria and local conformations. We reasoned that the propensity of these functional groups to participate in hydrogen bonding could be exploited to enforce intramolecular or intermolecular interactions that yield new peptoid structures. Here, we report the design, synthesis, and detailed conformational analysis of a series of model N-hydroxy peptoids. These peptoids were readily synthesized, and their structures were analyzed in solution by 1D and 2D NMR and in the solid-state by X-ray crystallography. The N-hydroxy amides were found to strongly favor trans conformations with respect to the peptoid backbone in chloroform. More notably, unique sheet-like structures held together via intermolecular hydrogen bonds were observed in the X-ray crystal structures of an N-hydroxy amide peptoid dimer, which to our knowledge represent the first structure of this type reported for peptoids. These results suggest that the N-hydroxy amide can be utilized to control both local backbone geometries and longer-range intermolecular interactions in peptoids, and represents a new functional group in the peptoid design toolbox.
Hypoxia inducible factors (HIFs) are heterodimeric transcription factors responsible for the metazoan hypoxia response and are required for tumor growth, metastasis and resistance to cancer treatment. The C-terminal PAS domain of HIF2α (HIF2α PAS-B) contains a preformed solvent-inaccessible cavity that binds artificial ligands that allosterically perturb the formation of the HIF heterodimer. To better understand how small molecules bind within this domain, we examined the structures, equilibrium and transition state thermodynamics of HIF2α PAS-B with several artificial ligands using ITC, NMR exchange spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography. Rapid association rates reveal that ligand binding is not dependent upon a slow conformational change in the protein to permit ligand access, despite the closed conformation observed in NMR and crystal structures. Compensating enthalpic and entropic contributions to the thermodynamic barrier for ligand binding suggest a binding-competent transition state characterized by increased structural disorder. Finally, molecular dynamics simulations reveal conversion between open and closed conformations of the protein and pathways of ligand entry into the binding pocket.
PAS domain; ligand binding