R. Sathyapriya.¤, M. S. Vijayabaskar., Saraswathi Vishveshwara*
Molecular Biophysics Unit, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
Protein–DNA interactions are crucial for many cellular processes. Now with the increased availability of structures of protein–DNA complexes, gaining deeper insights into the nature of protein–DNA interactions has become possible. Earlier, investigations have characterized the interface properties by considering pairwise interactions. However, the information communicated along the interfaces is rarely a pairwise phenomenon, and we feel that a global picture can be obtained by considering a protein–DNA complex as a network of noncovalently interacting systems. Furthermore, most of the earlier investigations have been carried out from the protein point of view (protein-centric), and the present network approach aims to combine both the protein-centric and the DNA-centric points of view. Part of the study involves the development of methodology to investigate protein–DNA graphs/networks with the development of key parameters. A network representation provides a holistic view of the interacting surface and has been reported here for the first time. The second part of the study involves the analyses of these graphs in terms of clusters of interacting residues and the identification of highly connected residues (hubs) along the protein–DNA interface. A predominance of deoxyribose–amino acid clusters in b-sheet proteins, distinction of the interface clusters in helix–turn–helix, and the zipper-type proteins would not have been possible by conventional pairwise interaction analysis. Additionally, we propose a potential classification scheme for a set of protein–DNA complexes on the basis of the protein–DNA interface clusters. This provides a general idea of how the proteins interact with the different components of DNA in different complexes. Thus,... [continues]
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