Molecular dynamics simulation approach for the prediction of transmembrane helix–helix heterodimers assembly
A rule-based automated method is presented for modeling the structures of the seven transmembrane helices of G-protein-coupled receptors. The structures are generated by using a simulated annealing Monte Carlo procedure that positions and orients rigid helices to satisfy structural restraints. The restraints are derived from analysis of experimental information from biophysical studies on native and mutant proteins, from analysis of the sequences of related proteins, and from theoretical considerations of protein structure. Calculations are presented for two systems. The method was validated through calculations using appropriate experimental information for bacteriorhodopsin, which produced a model structure with a root mean square (rms) deviation of 1.87 A from the structure determined by electron microscopy. Calculations are also presented using experimental and theoretical information available for bovine rhodopsin to assign the helices to a projection density map and to produce a model of bovine rhodopsin that can be used as a template for modeling other G-protein-coupled receptors.