We present a new Matched Interface and Boundary (MIB) regularization method for treating charge singularity in solvated biomolecules whose electrostatics are described by the Poisson–Boltzmann (PB) equation. In a regularization method, by decomposing the potential function into two or three components, the singular component can be analytically represented by the Green’s function, while other components possess a higher regularity. Our new regularization combines the efficiency of two-component schemes with the accuracy of the three-component schemes. Based on this regularization, a new MIB finite difference algorithm is developed for solving both linear and nonlinear PB equations, where the nonlinearity is handled by using the inexact-Newton’s method. Compared with the existing MIB PB solver based on a three-component regularization, the present algorithm is simpler to implement by circumventing the work to solve a boundary value Poisson equation inside the molecular interface and to compute related interface jump conditions numerically. Moreover, the new MIB algorithm becomes computationally less expensive, while maintains the same second order accuracy. This is numerically verified by calculating the electrostatic potential and solvation energy on the Kirkwood sphere on which the analytical solutions are available and on a series of proteins with various sizes.
Shenggao ZhouSoochow UniversityR. G. WeissETH ZurichLi-Tien ChengUniversity of California, San DiegoJoachim DzubiellaUniversity of FreiburgJ. Andrew McCammonUniversity of California, San DiegoBo LiUniversity of California, San Diego
Numerical Analysis and Scientific ComputingData Analysis, Bio-Statistics, Bio-Mathematicsmathscidoc:2005.25001
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 116, (30), 14989–14994, 2019.7
Ligand-receptor binding and unbinding are fundamental biomolecular processes and particularly essential to drug efficacy. Environmental water fluctuations, however, impact the corresponding thermodynamics and kinetics and thereby challenge theoretical descriptions. Here, we devise a holistic, implicit-solvent, multi-method approach to predict the (un)binding kinetics for a generic ligand-pocket model. We use the variational implicit-solvent model (VISM) to calculate the solute-solvent interfacial structures and the corresponding free energies, and combine the VISM with the string method to obtain the minimum energy paths and transition states between the various metastable (“dry” and “wet”) hydration states. The resulting dry-wet transition rates are then used in a spatially-dependent multi-state continuous-time Markov chain Brownian dynamics simulations, and the related Fokker–Planck equation calculations, of the ligand stochastic motion, providing the mean first-passage times for binding and unbinding. We find the hydration transitions to significantly slow down the binding process, in semi-quantitative agreement with existing explicit-water simulations, but significantly accelerate the unbinding process. Moreover, our methods allow the characterization of non-equilibrium hydration states of pocket and ligand during the ligand movement, for which we find substantial memory and hysteresis effects for binding versus unbinding. Our study thus provides a significant step forward towards efficient, physics-based interpretation and predictions of the complex kinetics in realistic ligand-receptor systems.
Many cellular processes are governed by stochastic reaction events. These events do not necessarily occur in single steps of individual molecules, and, conversely, each birth or death of a macromolecule (e.g., protein) could involve several small reaction steps, creating a memory between individual events and thus leading to nonmarkovian reaction kinetics. Characterizing this kinetics is challenging. Here, we develop a systematic approach for a general reaction network with arbitrary intrinsic waiting-time distributions, which includes the stationary generalized chemical-master equation (sgCME), the stationary generalized Fokker–Planck equation, and the generalized linear-noise approximation. The first formulation converts a nonmarkovian issue into a markovian one by introducing effective transition rates (that explicitly decode the effect of molecular memory) for the reactions in an equivalent reaction network with the same substrates but without molecular memory. Nonmarkovian features of the reaction kinetics can be revealed by solving the sgCME. The latter 2 formulations can be used in the fast evaluation of fluctuations. These formulations can have broad applications, and, in particular, they may help us discover new biological knowledge underlying memory effects. When they are applied to generalized stochastic models of gene-expression regulation, we find that molecular memory is in effect equivalent to a feedback and can induce bimodality, fine-tune the expression noise, and induce switch.
Yujie YeDepartment of Biochemistry and Cellular and Molecular Biology, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, United States of AmericaXin KangShanghai Center for Mathematical Sciences, Fudan University, Shanghai, ChinaJordan BaileyDepartment of Biochemistry and Cellular and Molecular Biology, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, United States of AmericaChunhe LiShanghai Center for Mathematical Sciences, Fudan University, Shanghai, ChinaTian HongDepartment of Biochemistry and Cellular and Molecular Biology, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, United States of America
Multistep cell fate transitions with stepwise changes of transcriptional profiles are common to many developmental, regenerative and pathological processes. The multiple intermediate cell lineage states can serve as differentiation checkpoints or branching points for channeling cells to more than one lineages. However, mechanisms underlying these transitions remain elusive. Here, we explored gene regulatory circuits that can generate multiple intermediate cellular states with stepwise modulations of transcription factors. With unbiased searching in the network topology space, we found a motif family containing a large set of networks can give rise to four attractors with the stepwise regulations of transcription factors, which limit the reversibility of three consecutive steps of the lineage transition. We found that there is an enrichment of these motifs in a transcriptional network controlling the early T cell development, and a mathematical model based on this network recapitulates multistep transitions in the early T cell lineage commitment. By calculating the energy landscape and minimum action paths for the T cell model, we quantified the stochastic dynamics of the critical factors in response to the differentiation signal with fluctuations. These results are in good agreement with experimental observations and they suggest the stable characteristics of the intermediate states in the T cell differentiation. These dynamical features may help to direct the cells to correct lineages during development. Our findings provide general design principles for multistep cell linage transitions and new insights into the early T cell development. The network motifs containing a large family of topologies can be useful for analyzing diverse biological systems with multistep transitions.