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The Use of Multiscale Molecular Simulations in Understanding a Relationship between the Structure and Function of Biological Systems of the Brain: The Application to Monoamine Oxidase Enzymes

Vianello, Robert; Domene, Carmen; Mavri, Janez (2016) The Use of Multiscale Molecular Simulations in Understanding a Relationship between the Structure and Function of Biological Systems of the Brain: The Application to Monoamine Oxidase Enzymes. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 10 . 327_1-327_24. ISSN 1662-453X

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Computational techniques provide accurate descriptions of the structure and dynamics of biological systems, contributing to their understanding at an atomic level.Classical MD simulations are a precious computational tool for the processes where no chemical reactions take place.QM calculations provide valuable information about the enzyme activity, being able to distinguish among several mechanistic pathways, provided a carefully selected cluster model of the enzyme is considered.Multiscale QM/MM simulation is the method of choice for the computational treatment of enzyme reactions offering quantitative agreement with experimentally determined reaction parameters.Molecular simulation provide insight into the mechanism of both the catalytic activity and inhibition of monoamine oxidases, thus aiding in the rational design of their inhibitors that are all employed and antidepressants and antiparkinsonian drugs. Aging society and therewith associated neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric diseases, including depression, Alzheimer's disease, obsessive disorders, and Parkinson's disease, urgently require novel drug candidates. Targets include monoamine oxidases A and B (MAOs), acetylcholinesterase (AChE), butyrylcholinesterase (BChE), and various receptors and transporters. For rational drug design it is particularly important to combine experimental synthetic, kinetic, toxicological, and pharmacological information with structural and computational work. This paper describes the application of various modern computational biochemistry methods in order to improve the understanding of a relationship between the structure and function of large biological systems including ion channels, transporters, receptors, and metabolic enzymes. The methods covered stem from classical molecular dynamics simulations to understand the physical basis and the time evolution of the structures, to combined QM, and QM/MM approaches to probe the chemical mechanisms of enzymatic activities and their inhibition. As an illustrative example, the later will focus on the monoamine oxidase family of enzymes, which catalyze the degradation of amine neurotransmitters in various parts of the brain, the imbalance of which is associated with the development and progression of a range of neurodegenerative disorders. Inhibitors that act mainly on MAO A are used in the treatment of depression, due to their ability to raise serotonin concentrations, while MAO B inhibitors decrease dopamine degradation and improve motor control in patients with Parkinson disease. Our results give strong support that both MAO isoforms, A and B, operate through the hydride transfer mechanism. Relevance of MAO catalyzed reactions and MAO inhibition in the context of neurodegeneration will be discussed.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: central nervous system ; computational enzymology ; drug design ; hydride transfer reaction ; molecular dynamics simulation ; multiscale simulations ; neural signal transduction ; neurotransmitter metabolism
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Chemistry
Divisions: Division of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry
Depositing User: Robert Vianello
Date Deposited: 05 Sep 2017 14:14
DOI: 10.3389/fnins.2016.00327

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