Nevin Manimala Statistics

IRAA: A statistical tool for investigating a protein-protein interaction interface from multiple structures

Protein Sci. 2022 Dec 1:e4523. doi: 10.1002/pro.4523. Online ahead of print.


Understanding protein-protein interactions (PPIs) is fundamental to infer how different molecular systems work. A major component to model molecular recognition is the Buried Surface Area (BSA), i.e., the area that becomes inaccessible to solvent upon complex formation. Till date many attempts tried to connect BSA to molecular recognition principles, and in particular, to the underlying binding affinity. However, the most popular approach to calculate BSA is to use a single (or in some cases few) bound structures, consequently neglecting a wealth of structural information of the interacting proteins derived from ensembles corresponding to their unbound and bound states. Moreover, the most popular method inherently assumes the component proteins to bind as rigid entities. To address the above shortcomings, we developed a Monte Carlo method-based Interface Residue Assessment Algorithm (IRAA), to calculate a combined distribution of BSA for a given complex. Further, we apply our algorithm to human ACE2 and SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein complex, a system of prime importance. Results show a much broader distribution of BSA compared to that obtained from only the bound structure or structures and extended residue members of the interface with implications to the underlying biomolecular recognition. We derive that specific interface residues of ACE2 and of S-protein are consistently highly flexible, whereas other residues systematically show minor conformational variations. In effect, IRAA facilitates use of all available structural data for any biomolecular complex of interest, extracting quantitative parameters with statistical significance, thereby providing a deeper biophysical understanding of the molecular system under investigation. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

PMID:36454539 | DOI:10.1002/pro.4523

By Nevin Manimala

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