In this work with ab initio computations, we describe relevant interactions between protein active sites and ligands, using as a test case arthropod hemocyanins. A computational analysis of models corresponding to the oxygenated and deoxygenated forms of the hemocyanin active site is performed using the Density Functional Theory approach. We characterize the electron density distribution of the binding site with and without bound oxygen in relation to the geometry, which stems out of the crystals of three hemocyanin proteins, namely the oxygenated form from the horseshoe crab Limulus polyphemus, and the deoxygenated forms, respectively, from the same source and from another arthropod, the spiny lobster Panulirus interruptus. Comparison of the three available crystals indicate structural differences at the oxygen binding site, which cannot be explained only by the presence and absence of the oxygen ligand, since the geometry of the ligand site of the deoxygenated Panulirus hemocyanin is rather similar to that of the oxygenated Limulus protein. This finding was interpreted in the flame of a mechanism of allosteric regulation for oxygen binding. However, the cooperative mechanism, which is experimentally well documented, is only partially supported by crystallographic data, since no oxygenated crystal of Panulirus hemocyanin is presently available. We address the following question: is the local ligand geometry responsible for the difference of the dicopper distance observed in the two deoxygenated forms of hemocyanin or is it necessary to advocate the allosteric regulation of the active site conformations in order to reconcile the different crystal forms? We find that the difference of the dicopper distance between the two deoxygenated hemocyanins is not due to the small differences of ligand geometry found in the crystals and conclude that it must be therefore stabilized by the whole protein tertiary structure.

Quantum mechanical analysis of oxygenated and deoxygenated states of hemocyanin

Fariselli, Piero;
1999

Abstract

In this work with ab initio computations, we describe relevant interactions between protein active sites and ligands, using as a test case arthropod hemocyanins. A computational analysis of models corresponding to the oxygenated and deoxygenated forms of the hemocyanin active site is performed using the Density Functional Theory approach. We characterize the electron density distribution of the binding site with and without bound oxygen in relation to the geometry, which stems out of the crystals of three hemocyanin proteins, namely the oxygenated form from the horseshoe crab Limulus polyphemus, and the deoxygenated forms, respectively, from the same source and from another arthropod, the spiny lobster Panulirus interruptus. Comparison of the three available crystals indicate structural differences at the oxygen binding site, which cannot be explained only by the presence and absence of the oxygen ligand, since the geometry of the ligand site of the deoxygenated Panulirus hemocyanin is rather similar to that of the oxygenated Limulus protein. This finding was interpreted in the flame of a mechanism of allosteric regulation for oxygen binding. However, the cooperative mechanism, which is experimentally well documented, is only partially supported by crystallographic data, since no oxygenated crystal of Panulirus hemocyanin is presently available. We address the following question: is the local ligand geometry responsible for the difference of the dicopper distance observed in the two deoxygenated forms of hemocyanin or is it necessary to advocate the allosteric regulation of the active site conformations in order to reconcile the different crystal forms? We find that the difference of the dicopper distance between the two deoxygenated hemocyanins is not due to the small differences of ligand geometry found in the crystals and conclude that it must be therefore stabilized by the whole protein tertiary structure.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3183993
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