The dynamic conformational landscapes of the protein methyltransferase SETD8


Rafal P. Wiewiora*, Shi Chen*, Fanwang Meng, Nicolas Babault, Anqi Ma, Wenyu Yu, Kun Qian, Hao Hu, Hua Zou, Junyi Wang, Shijie Fan, Gil Blum, Fabio Pittella-Silva, Kyle A. Beauchamp, Wolfram Tempel, Hualing Jiang, Kaixian Chen, Robert Skene, Y. George Zheng, Peter J. Brown, Jian Jin, John D. Chodera+, and Minkui Luo+.
Submitted. [bioRxiv] 
* These authors contributed equally to this work
+ Co-corresponding authors

In this work, we show how targeted X-ray crystallography using covalent inhibitors and depletion of native ligands to reveal structures of low-population hidden conformations can be combined with massively distributed molecular simulation to resolve the functional dynamic landscape of the protein methyltransferase SETD8 in unprecedented atomistic detail. Using an aggregate of six milliseconds of fully atomistic simulation from Folding@home, we use Markov state models to illuminate the conformational dynamics of this important epigenetic protein.

An open library of human kinase domain constructs for automated bacterial expression


Steven K. Albanese*, Daniel L. Parton*, Mehtap Isik**, Lucelenie Rodríguez-Laureano**, Sonya M. Hanson,  Julie M. Behr, Scott Gradia, Chris Jeans, Nicholas M. Levinson, Markus A. Seeliger, and John D. Chodera.
* co-first author; ** co-second author
Biochemistry 57:4675, 2018. [DOI] [bioRxiv]
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Plasmids available via AddGene

Human kinase catalytic domains---the therapeutic target of selective kinase inhibitors used in the treatment of cancer and other diseases---are notoriously difficult and expensive to express in insect or human cells. Here, we utilize the phosphatase co-expression technology developed by Markus Seeliger (now at Stony Brook) to develop a library of human kinase catalytic domains for facile and inexpensive expression in bacteria.

Predicting resistance of clinical Abl mutations to targeted kinase inhibitors using alchemical free-energy calculations

Kevin Hauser, Christopher Negron, Steven K. Albanese, Soumya Ray, Thomas Steinbrecher, Robert Abel, John D. Chodera, and Lingle Wang.
Communications Biology 1:70, 2018 [DOI] [input files and analysis scripts]

In our first collaborative paper with Schrödinger, we present the first comprehensive benchmark assessing the ability for alchemical free energy calculations to predict clinical mutational resistance or susceptibility to targeted kinase inhibitors using the well-studied kinase Abl, the target of therapy for chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML).

Quantifying configuration-sampling error in Langevin simulations of complex molecular systems


Josh Fass, David Sivak , Gavin E. Crooks, Kyle A. Beauchamp, Benedict Leimkuhler, and John Chodera.
Entropy 20:318, 2018. [DOI] [GitHub] [bioRxiv preprint]

Molecular dynamics simulations necessarily use a finite timestep, which introduces error or bias in the sampled configuration space density that grows rapidly with increasing timestep. For the first time, we show how to compute a natural measure of this error---the KL divergence---in both phase and configuration space for a widely used family of Langevin integrators, and show that VRORV is generally superior for simulation of molecular systems.

A dynamic mechanism for allosteric activation of Aurora kinase A by activation loop phosphorylation

Emily F. Ruff, Joseph M. Muretta, Andrew Thompson, Eric W. Lake, Soreen Cyphers, Steven K. Albanese, Sonya M. Hanson, Julie M. Behr, David D. Thomas,  John D. Chodera, and Nicholas M. Levinson. 
eLife 7:e32766, 2018. [DOI] [bioRxiv]

We show that, contrary to the canonical belief that activation shifts DFG-out to DFG-in populations, phosphorylation of AurA does not shift DFG-in/out equilibrium but instead remodels the conformational distribution of the DFG-in state.