Simulated refolding of stretched titin immunoglobulin domains

TitleSimulated refolding of stretched titin immunoglobulin domains
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsGao, M, Lu H, Schulten K
JournalBiophysical journal
Date Published2001 Oct

Steered molecular dynamics (SMD) is used to investigate forced unfolding and spontaneous refolding of immunoglobulin I27, a domain of the muscle protein titin. Previous SMD simulations revealed the events leading to stretch-induced unfolding of I27, the rupture of hydrogen bonds bridging beta-strands A and B, and those bridging beta-strands A' and G, the latter rupture occurring at an extension of approximately 15 A and preceding the complete unfolding. Simulations are now used to study the refolding of partially unfolded I27 domains. The results reveal that stretched domains with ruptured interstrand hydrogen bonds shrink along the extension direction. Two types of refolding patterns are recognized: for separated beta-strands A' and G, in most simulations five of the six hydrogen bonds between A' and G stably reformed in 2 ns, whereas for separated beta-strands A and B hydrogen bonds seldom reformed in eight 2-ns simulations. The mechanical stability of the partially refolded intermediates has been tested by re-stretching.

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Alternate JournalBiophys. J.