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Effect of pH and ligand charge state on BACE-1 fragment docking performance.

Authors
  • Domínguez, José L
  • Villaverde, M Carmen
  • Sussman, Fredy
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of Computer-Aided Molecular Design
Publisher
Springer-Verlag
Publication Date
May 01, 2013
Volume
27
Issue
5
Pages
403–417
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s10822-013-9653-7
PMID: 23640428
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

In this work we propose a protocol for estimating the effect of pH on the docking performance to BACE-1, which affords the charge state of the inhibitor as well as the protonation state of all ionisable residues in the protein at a given pH value. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of a protocol predicting the BACE-1 ligand docking poses not only at the neutral pH at which most crystallographic structures were obtained, but also at the optimal pH of the enzyme (in the acidic range), at which most of the BACE-1 binding affinity assays are performed. We have applied this protocol to a set of 23 fragment-like BACE-1 ligands that span four orders of magnitude in their binding affinities. The pK a values of the BACE-1 acidic residues deviate substantially from the estimates for model compounds in solution and display a ligand dependent variability, especially in the case of the catalytic Asp dyad residues. This outcome should have a strong bearing on the design of protocols for docking based BACE-1 screening campaigns. Finally, we were able to find an explanation for the poor docking success rate of some fragments based on the availability of anchoring points, a rationale that could help to improve hit rates in BACE-1 screening campaigns.

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