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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2012, Article ID 691579, 11 pages
Research Article

Novel Computational Methodologies for Structural Modeling of Spacious Ligand Binding Sites of G-Protein-Coupled Receptors: Development and Application to Human Leukotriene B4 Receptor

1Graduate School of Innovation & Technology Management, Yamaguchi University, 2-16-1 Tokiwadai, Ube, Yamaguchi 755-8611, Japan
2Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Hiroshima University, 1-2-3 Kasumi, Minami-Ku, Hiroshima 734-8551, Japan

Received 12 October 2012; Accepted 30 October 2012

Academic Editors: S. Jahandideh, P. Jain, and M. Liu

Copyright © 2012 Yoko Ishino and Takanori Harada. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper describes a novel method to predict the activated structures of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) with high accuracy, while aiming for the use of the predicted 3D structures in in silico virtual screening in the future. We propose a new method for modeling GPCR thermal fluctuations, where conformation changes of the proteins are modeled by combining fluctuations on multiple time scales. The core idea of the method is that a molecular dynamics simulation is used to calculate average 3D coordinates of all atoms of a GPCR protein against heat fluctuation on the picosecond or nanosecond time scale, and then evolutionary computation including receptor-ligand docking simulations functions to determine the rotation angle of each helix of a GPCR protein as a movement on a longer time scale. The method was validated using human leukotriene B4 receptor BLT1 as a sample GPCR. Our study demonstrated that the proposed method was able to derive the appropriate 3D structure of the active-state GPCR which docks with its agonists.