Determining and Exploiting Common Interactions in the Peptidyl Transferase Center for Enhanced Derivative and Bidentate Design

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Virginia Tech


It is predicted that by 2050 there will be 10 million deaths annually due to super-resistant bacterial infections. Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is already responsible for nearly 5 million deaths a year. Ribosomes serve as an ideal drug target being frequently targeted by antibiotics and having a highly conserved structure with few options for resistance. However, computer aided drug design (CADD) using ribosome crystal structures presents several challenges and is underutilized in the field. In this work we establish a successful protocol for antibiotic redocking and docking within the high interest sites of the peptidyl transferase center (PTC). Molecular visualization and interaction mapping were used to atomistically delineate binding patterns in the ribosomal PTC that could be used for CADD. Eleven ribosome crystal structures were validated for computational testing, which revealed derivative binding patterns in the A-site and P-site that can be used to increase antibiotic efficacy. Ribosome overlays revealed high interaction frequency nucleotides that were widely conserved throughout the different species and could be used to inform bidentate design to target two pockets at once. This work serves as a basis for methods to computationally explore drug optimization on ribosome targeting antibiotics to help combat the rapid expansion of AMR.



Antibiotic Redesign, Ribosome, Molecular Docking, Antimicrobial Resistance