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Bulletin of the Korean Chemical Society (BKCS)

ISSN 0253-2964(Print)
ISSN 1229-5949(Online)
Volume 35, Number 3
BKCSDE 35(3)
March 20, 2014 

Molecular Dynamics Simulations of Hemolytic Peptide δ-Lysin Interacting with a POPC Lipid Bilayer
Kim M. Lorello, Alex J. Kreutzberger, Allison M. King, Hee-Seung Lee*
δ-Lysin, Antimicrobial peptides, POPC bilayer, Molecular Dynamics (MD)
The binding interaction between a hemolytic peptide δ-lysin and a zwitterionic lipid bilayer POPC was investigated through a series of molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. δ-Lysin is a 26-residue, amphipathic, α-helical peptide toxin secreted by Staphylococcus aureus. Unlike typical antimicrobial peptides, δ-lysin has no net charge and it is often found in aggregated forms in solution even at low concentration. Our study showed that only the monomer, not dimer, inserts into the bilayer interior. The monomer is preferentially attracted toward the membrane with its hydrophilic side facing the bilayer surface. However, peptide insertion requires the opposite orientation where the hydrophobic side of peptide points toward the membrane interior. Such orientation allows the charged residues, Lys and Asp, to have stable salt bridges with the lipid head-group while the hydrophobic residues are buried deeper in the hydrophobic lipid interior. Our simulations suggest that breaking these salt bridges is the key step for the monomer to be fully inserted into the center of lipid bilayer and, possibly, to translocate across the membrane.
783 - 792
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