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Open Access research which pushes advances in bionanotechnology

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SIPBS is a major research centre in Scotland focusing on 'new medicines', 'better medicines' and 'better use of medicines'. This includes the exploration of nanoparticles and nanomedicines within the wider research agenda of bionanotechnology, in which the tools of nanotechnology are applied to solve biological problems. At SIPBS multidisciplinary approaches are also pursued to improve bioscience understanding of novel therapeutic targets with the aim of developing therapeutic interventions and the investigation, development and manufacture of drug substances and products.

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Molecular dynamics simulations of hen egg white lysozyme adsorption at a charged solid surface

Kubiak, K. and Mulheran, P.A. (2009) Molecular dynamics simulations of hen egg white lysozyme adsorption at a charged solid surface. Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 113 (36). pp. 12189-12200.

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Abstract

Hen egg white lysozyme (HEWL) adsorption on negatively charged, hydrophilic surfaces has been investigated using atomistic molecular dynamics. Analysis of six 20 ns trajectories performed at pH 7 and ionic strength 0.02 M (NaCl) reveals that conformational alterations are required for HEWL adsorption, and that upon adsorption the protein loses some α-helical content. Simulations for a few different initial orientations show that the HEWL protein adsorbs on a flat surface with an angle between the protein long axis and the surface of about 45°. The main adsorption site is located on the N,C-terminal part of the HEWL surface; the major role is played by Lys1, Arg5, Arg14, and Arg128. Adsorption is not found with contrary orientations. Two additional 20 ns trajectories calculated with 0.5 M ionic strength suggest that the main force governing adsorption is electrostatic attraction between parts of the protein and the surface. A trajectory obtained for the protein situated inside a cubic box built from the charged surfaces shows that the adsorption pattern is different for flat and nonflat surfaces, and in particular, adsorption on the nonflat surface requires tertiary structure alterations and partial unfolding. The observed trends are consistent with both experimental and previous computational studies.