Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 21764343
J. Mol. Graph. Model. 2011 Sep;30:100-9
Numerous high-resolution crystallographic structures of the acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP), a molluscan cholinergic protein, homologous to the extracellular domain of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, are available. This offers opportunities to model the interaction between various ligands and the acetylcholine binding site. Herein we present a study of the interplay between ligand binding and motions of the C-loop capping the binding site. Nicotinic agonists and antagonists were docked on AChBP X-ray structures. It is shown that the studied agonists and antagonists can be discriminated according to their higher affinities for structures respectively obtained in the presence of agonists or antagonists, highlighting the fact that AChBP structures retain a pharmacological footprint of the compound used in crystallography experiments. A detailed analysis of the binding site cavities suggests that this property is mainly related to the shape of the cavities.