CMB  Vol.2 No.1 , March 2012
Role of Ligand Reorganization and Conformational Restraints on the Binding Free Energies of DAPY Non-Nucleoside Inhibitors to HIV Reverse Transcriptase
Author(s) Emilio Gallicchio*
ABSTRACT
The results of computer simulations of the binding of etravirine (TMC125) and rilpivirine (TMC278) to HIV reverse transcriptase are reported. It is confirmed that consistent binding free energy estimates are obtained with or without the application of torsional restraints when the free energies of imposing the restraints are taken into account. The restraints have a smaller influence on the thermodynamics and apparent kinetics of binding of TMC125 compared to the more flexible TMC278 inhibitor. The concept of the reorganization free energy of binding is useful to understand and categorize these effects. Contrary to expectations, the use of conformational restraints did not consistently enhance convergence of binding free energy estimates due to suppression of binding/unbinding pathways and due to the influence of rotational degrees of freedom not directly controlled by the restraints. Physical insights concerning the thermodynamic driving forces for binding and the role of “jiggling” and “wiggling” motion of the ligands are discussed. Based on these insights we conclude that an ideal inhibitor, if chemically realizable, would possess the electrostatic charge distribution of TMC125, so as to form strong interactions with the receptor, and the larger and more flexible substituents of TMC278, so as to minimize reorganization free energy penalties and the effects of resistance mutations, suitably modified, as in TMC125, so as to disfavor the formation of non-binding competent extended conformations when free in solution.

Cite this paper
E. Gallicchio, "Role of Ligand Reorganization and Conformational Restraints on the Binding Free Energies of DAPY Non-Nucleoside Inhibitors to HIV Reverse Transcriptase," Computational Molecular Bioscience, Vol. 2 No. 1, 2012, pp. 7-22. doi: 10.4236/cmb.2012.21002.
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