Molecular evolution of affinity and flexibility in the immune system.

  title={Molecular evolution of affinity and flexibility in the immune system.},
  author={Ian F. Thorpe and Charles L. Brooks},
  journal={Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America},
  volume={104 21},
The immune system responds to the introduction of foreign antigens by rapidly evolving antibodies with increasing affinity for the antigen (i.e., maturation). To investigate the factors that control this process at the molecular level, we have assessed the changes in flexibility that accompany ligand binding at four stages of maturation in the 4-4-20 antibody. Our studies, based on molecular dynamics, indicate that increased affinity for the target ligand is associated with a decreased entropic… CONTINUE READING


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