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Non-Markovian modeling of protein folding.

  • Ayaz, Cihan
  • Tepper, Lucas
  • Brünig, Florian N
  • Kappler, Julian
  • Daldrop, Jan O
  • Netz, Roland R
Publication Date
Aug 03, 2021
Apollo - University of Cambridge Repository
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We extract the folding free energy landscape and the time-dependent friction function, the two ingredients of the generalized Langevin equation (GLE), from explicit-water molecular dynamics (MD) simulations of the α-helix forming polypeptide [Formula: see text] for a one-dimensional reaction coordinate based on the sum of the native H-bond distances. Folding and unfolding times from numerical integration of the GLE agree accurately with MD results, which demonstrate the robustness of our GLE-based non-Markovian model. In contrast, Markovian models do not accurately describe the peptide kinetics and in particular, cannot reproduce the folding and unfolding kinetics simultaneously, even if a spatially dependent friction profile is used. Analysis of the GLE demonstrates that memory effects in the friction significantly speed up peptide folding and unfolding kinetics, as predicted by the Grote-Hynes theory, and are the cause of anomalous diffusion in configuration space. Our methods are applicable to any reaction coordinate and in principle, also to experimental trajectories from single-molecule experiments. Our results demonstrate that a consistent description of protein-folding dynamics must account for memory friction effects.

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