• Tuesday, March 12, 2024 @ 12:00 am

AlphaMol analyzes and discusses how to apply computational methods to accelerate membrane protein, including GPCR, drug discovery in the publication Nature Biotechnology.

The application of computational biology in drug development for membrane protein targets has experienced a boost from recent developments in deep learning-driven structure prediction, increased speed and resolution of structure elucidation, machine learning structure-based design and the evaluation of big data.

Recent protein structure predictions based on machine learning tools have delivered surprisingly reliable results for water-soluble and membrane proteins but have limitations for development of drugs that target membrane proteins. Structural transitions of membrane proteins have a central role during transmembrane signaling and are often influenced by therapeutic compounds. Resolving the structural and functional basis of dynamic transmembrane signaling networks, especially within the native membrane or cellular environment, remains a central challenge for drug development.

Tackling this challenge will require an interplay between experimental and computational tools, such as super-resolution optical microscopy for quantification of the molecular interactions of cellular signaling networks and their modulation by potential drugs, cryo-electron microscopy for determination of the structural transitions of proteins in native cell membranes and entire cells, and computational tools for data analysis and prediction of the structure and function of cellular signaling networks, as well as generation of promising drug candidates.

Go to "Computational drug development for membrane protein targets" in Nature Biotechnology (doi:10.1038/s41587-023-01987-2)

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