Computational Analysis of the Crystal and Cryo-EM Structures of P-Loop Channels with Drugs Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • The superfamily of P-loop channels includes various potassium channels, voltage-gated sodium and calcium channels, transient receptor potential channels, and ionotropic glutamate receptors. Despite huge structural and functional diversity of the channels, their pore-forming domain has a conserved folding. In the past two decades, scores of atomic-scale structures of P-loop channels with medically important drugs in the inner pore have been published. High structural diversity of these complexes complicates the comparative analysis of these structures. Here we 3D-aligned structures of drug-bound P-loop channels, compared their geometric characteristics, and analyzed the energetics of ligand-channel interactions. In the superimposed structures drugs occupy most of the sterically available space in the inner pore and subunit/repeat interfaces. Cationic groups of some drugs occupy vacant binding sites of permeant ions in the inner pore and selectivity-filter region. Various electroneutral drugs, lipids, and detergent molecules are seen in the interfaces between subunits/repeats. In many structures the drugs strongly interact with lipid and detergent molecules, but physiological relevance of such interactions is unclear. Some eukaryotic sodium and calcium channels have state-dependent or drug-induced π-bulges in the inner helices, which would be difficult to predict. The drug-induced π-bulges may represent a novel mechanism of gating modulation.

publication date

  • July 29, 2021

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