Martin Mönnigmann, C. A. Floudas:
Loop structure prediction with fexible stem geometries
Proteins: Structure, Function, and Bioinformatics, 2005, 2005, 61(4), 748-762
The structure prediction of loops with flexible stem residues is addressed in this paper. While the secondary structure of the stem residues is assumed to be known, the geometry of the protein into which the loop must fit is considered to be unknown in our methodology. As a consequence, the compatibility of the loop with the remainder of the protein is not used as a criterion to reject loop decoys. The loop structure prediction with flexible stems is more difficult than fitting loops into a known protein structure in that a larger conformational space has to be covered. The main focus of the paper is to assess the precision of loop structure prediction if no information on the protein geometry is available. The proposed approach is based on (i) dihedral angle sampling, (ii) structure optimization by energy minimization with a physically based energy function, (iii) clustering, and (iv) a comparison of strategies for the selection of loops identified in (iii). Steps (i) and (ii) have similarities to previous approaches to loop structure prediction with fixed stems. Step (iii) is based on a new iterative approach to clustering that is tailored for the loop structure prediction problem with flexible stems. In this new approach, clustering is not only used to identify conformers that are likely to be close to the native structure, but clustering is also employed to identify far-from-native decoys. By discarding these decoys iteratively, the overall quality of the ensemble and the loop structure prediction is improved. Step (iv) provides a comparative study of criteria for loop selection based on energy, colony energy, cluster density, and a hybrid criterion introduced here. The proposed method is tested on a large set of 3215 loops from proteins in the PdbSelect25 set and to 179 loops from proteins from the Casp6 experiment.
structure prediction, loop structure, optimization