Center for Structural Genomics of Infectious Diseases Consortium

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Zheng H.,University of Virginia | Zheng H.,Center for Structural Genomics of Infectious Diseases Consortium | Chordia M.D.,University of Virginia | Chordia M.D.,Center for Structural Genomics of Infectious Diseases Consortium | And 9 more authors.
Nature Protocols | Year: 2014

Metals have vital roles in both the mechanism and architecture of biological macromolecules. Yet structures of metal-containing macromolecules in which metals are misidentified and/or suboptimally modeled are abundant in the Protein Data Bank (PDB). This shows the need for a diagnostic tool to identify and correct such modeling problems with metal-binding environments. The CheckMyMetal (CMM) web server (http://csgid.org/csgid/metalsites/) is a sophisticated, user-friendly web-based method to evaluate metal-binding sites in macromolecular structures using parameters derived from 7,350 metal-binding sites observed in a benchmark data set of 2,304 high-resolution crystal structures. The protocol outlines how the CMM server can be used to detect geometric and other irregularities in the structures of metal-binding sites, as well as how it can alert researchers to potential errors in metal assignment. The protocol also gives practical guidelines for correcting problematic sites by modifying the metal-binding environment and/or redefining metal identity in the PDB file. Several examples where this has led to meaningful results are described in the ANTICIPATED RESULTS section. CMM was designed for a broad audience - biomedical researchers studying metal-containing proteins and nucleic acids - but it is equally well suited for structural biologists validating new structures during modeling or refinement. The CMM server takes the coordinates of a metal-containing macromolecule structure in the PDB format as input and responds within a few seconds for a typical protein structure with 2-5 metal sites and a few hundred amino acids. © 2013 Nature America, Inc. All rights reserved.


Zheng H.,University of Virginia | Zheng H.,Center for Structural Genomics of Infectious Diseases Consortium | Zheng H.,Midwest Center for Structural Genomics Consortium | Zheng H.,New York Structural Genomics Research Consortium NYSGRC | And 16 more authors.
Nucleic Acids Research | Year: 2015

The ubiquitous presence of magnesium ions in RNA has long been recognized as a key factor governing RNA folding, and is crucial for many diverse functions of RNA molecules. In this work, Mg2+-binding architectures in RNA were systematically studied using a database of RNA crystal structures from the Protein Data Bank (PDB). Due to the abundance of poorly modeled or incorrectly identified Mg2+ ions, the set of all sites was comprehensively validated and filtered to identify a benchmark dataset of 15 334 'reliable' RNA-bound Mg2+ sites. The normalized frequencies by which specific RNA atoms coordinate Mg2+ were derived for both the inner and outer coordination spheres. A hierarchical classification system of Mg2+ sites in RNA structures was designed and applied to the benchmark dataset, yielding a set of 41 types of inner-sphere and 95 types of outer-sphere coordinating patterns. This classification system has also been applied to describe six previously reported Mg2+-binding motifs and detect them in new RNA structures. Investigation of the most populous site types resulted in the identification of seven novel Mg2+-binding motifs, and all RNA structures in the PDB were screened for the presence of these motifs. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

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