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K+ ions seemingly permeate K-channels rapidly because channel binding sites mimic coordination of K+ ions in water. Highly selective ion discrimination should occur when binding sites form rigid cavities that match K+, but not the smaller Na+, ion size or when binding sites are composed of specific chemical groups. Although conceptually attractive, these(More)
Several groups, including our own, have found molecular dynamics (MD) calculations to result in the size of the pore of an outer membrane bacterial porin, OmpF, to be reduced relative to its size in the x-ray crystal structure. At the narrowest portion of its pore, loop L3 was found to move toward the opposite face of the pore, resulting in decreasing the(More)
To understand ion permeation, one must assign correct ionization states to titratable amino acid residues in protein channels. We report on the effects of physical and methodological assumptions in calculating the protonation states at neutral bulk pH of titratable residues lining the lumen of the native Escherichia coli OmpF channel, and five mutants. We(More)
Transferring Na(+) and K(+) ions from their preferred coordination states in water to states having different coordination numbers incurs a free energy cost. In several examples in nature, however, these ions readily partition from aqueous-phase coordination states into spatial regions having much higher coordination numbers. Here we utilize statistical(More)
These two parameter sets yield different K + →Na + hydration free energy differences. While the parameters from Beglov and Roux (1994) yield a value of −20.7 kcal/mol, the parameters from Noskov and Roux (2008) yield a value of −18.6 kcal/mol. This consequently modifies two entries in Table I (marked by asterisks below), but has no impact on the published(More)
The level of complexity with which any biological ion interaction mechanism can be investigated, whether it is a binding mechanism in proteins or a permeation mechanism in ion channels, is invariably limited by the state-of-the-art of our understanding of the characteristic properties of ion solvation. Currently, our understanding of the energetic(More)
Potassium channels and valinomycin molecules share the exquisite ability to select K(+) over Na(+). Highly selective K channels maintain a special local environment around their binding sites devoid of competing hydrogen bond donor groups, which enables spontaneous transfer of K(+) from states of low coordinations in water into states of over-coordination(More)
The hydration of K(+) is studied using a hierarchy of theoretical approaches, including ab initio Born-Oppenheimer molecular dynamics and Car-Parrinello molecular dynamics, a polarizable force field model based on classical Drude oscillators, and a nonpolarizable fixed-charge potential based on the TIP3P water model. While models based more directly on(More)
During Ca(2+) activation, the Ca(2+)-binding sites of C2 domains typically bind multiple Ca(2+) ions in close proximity. These binding events exhibit positive cooperativity, despite the strong charge repulsion between the adjacent divalent cations. Using both experimental and computational approaches, the present study probes the detailed mechanisms of(More)
The physical properties of lipid bilayers can be remodeled by a variety of environmental factors. Here we investigate using molecular dynamics simulations the specific effects of nanoscopic substrates or external contact points on lipid membranes. We expose palmitoyl-oleoyl phosphatidylcholine bilayers unilaterally and separately to various model nanosized(More)