Image_1_Comparative Molecular Dynamics Simulations Provide Insight Into Antibiotic Interactions: A Case Study Using the Enzyme L,L-Diaminopimelate Aminotransferase (DapL).TIF
The L,L-diaminopimelate aminotransferase (DapL) pathway, a recently discovered variant of the lysine biosynthetic pathway, is an attractive pipeline to identify targets for the development of novel antibiotic compounds. DapL is a homodimer that catalyzes the conversion of tetrahydrodipicolinate to L,L-diaminopimelate in a single transamination reaction. The penultimate and ultimate products of the lysine biosynthesis pathway, meso-diaminopimelate and lysine, are key components of the Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacterial peptidoglycan cell wall. Humans are not able to synthesize lysine, and DapL has been identified in 13% of bacteria whose genomes have been sequenced and annotated to date, thus it is an attractive target for the development of narrow spectrum antibiotics through the prevention of both lysine biosynthesis and peptidoglycan crosslinking. To address the common lack of structural information when conducting compound screening experiments and provide support for the use of modeled structures, our analyses utilized inferred structures from related homologous enzymes. Using a comprehensive and comparative molecular dynamics (MD) software package—DROIDS (Detecting Relative Outlier Impacts in Dynamic Simulations) 2.0, we investigated the binding dynamics of four previously identified antagonistic ligands of DapL from Verrucomicrobium spinosum, a non-pathogenic relative of Chlamydia trachomatis. Here, we present putative docking positions of the four ligands and provide confirmatory comparative molecular dynamics simulations supporting the conformations. The simulations performed in this study can be applied to evaluate putative targets to predict compound effectiveness prior to in vivo and in vitro experimentation. Moreover, this approach has the potential to streamline the process of antibiotic development.