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  • 1.
    Kamerlin, Shina C. L.
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Organic Chemistry.
    Vicatos, Spyridon
    Dryga, Anatoly
    Warshel, Arieh
    Coarse-grained (multiscale) simulations in studies of biophysical and chemical systems2011In: Annual review of physical chemistry (Print), ISSN 0066-426X, E-ISSN 1545-1593, Vol. 62, p. 41-64Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Recent years have witnessed an explosion in computational power, leading toattempts to model ever more complex systems. Nevertheless, there remain cases for which the use of brute-force computer simulations is clearly not the solution. In such cases, great benefit can be obtained from the use of physically sound simplifications. The introduction of such coarse graining can be traced back to the early usage of a simplified model in studies of proteins. Since then, the field has progressed tremendously. In this review,we cover both key developments in the field and potential future directions. Additionally, particular emphasis is given to two general approaches, namely the renormalization and reference potential approaches, which allow one to move back and forth between the coarse-grained (CG) and full models, as these approaches provide the foundation for CG modeling of complex systems.

  • 2.
    Kamerlin, Shina C. L.
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Organic Chemistry.
    Warshel, Arieh
    Multiscale modeling of biological functions2011In: Physical Chemistry, Chemical Physics - PCCP, ISSN 1463-9076, E-ISSN 1463-9084, Vol. 13, no 22, p. 10401-10411Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Recent years have witnessed a tremendous explosion in computational power, which in turn has resulted in great progress in the complexity of the biological and chemical problems that can be addressed by means of all-atom simulations. Despite this, however, our computational time is not infinite, and in fact many of the key problems of the field were resolved long before the existence of the current levels of computational power. This review will start by presenting a brief historical overview of the use of multiscale simulations in biology, and then present some key developments in the field, highlighting several cases where the use of a physically sound simplification is clearly superior to a brute-force approach. Finally, some potential future directions will be discussed.

  • 3.
    Kamerlin, Shina C. L.
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Organic Chemistry.
    Warshel, Arieh
    The empirical valence bond model: theory and applications2011In: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. Computational Molecular Science, ISSN 1759-0876, E-ISSN 1759-0884, Vol. 1, no 1, p. 30-45Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Recent years have seen an explosion in computer power, allowing for the examination of ever more challenging problems. For instance, a recent simulation study, which was the first of its kind, was able to actually explore the dynamical nature of enzyme catalysis on a millisecond timescale (Pisliakov AV, Cao J, Kamerlin SCL, Warshel A. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2009, 106:17359.), something that as recently as a year or two ago would have been considered impossible. However, the questions that need addressing are nevertheless very complex, and experimental approaches can unfortunately often be inconclusive (Åqvist J, Kolmodin K, Florián J, Warshel A, Chem Biol 1999, 6:R71.) in answering them. Therefore, it is essential to have an approach that is both reliable and able to capture complex systems in order to resolve long-standing controversies [particularly with regards to questions such as the origin of enzyme catalysis, where the relevant energy contributions cannot be separated without some computational models (Warshel A, Sharma PK, Kato M, Xiang Y, Liu H, Olsson MHM, Chem Rev 2006, 106:3210.)]. Herein, we will present the empirical valence bond (EVB) approach, which, at present, is arguably the most powerful tool for examining chemical reactivity in the condensed phase. We will illustrate the effectiveness of the EVB method when evaluating, for instance, catalytic effects and demonstrate that it is currently the optimal tool for elucidating challenging problems such as understanding the catalytic power of enzymes. Finally, the increasing appreciation of this approach can maybe best illustrated not only by its proliferation but also by attempts to capture its basic chemistry under a different name, as will be discussed in this work.

  • 4.
    Kamerlin, Shina C. L.
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Organic Chemistry.
    Wilkie, John
    The effect of leaving group on mechanistic preference in phosphate monoesterhydrolysis2011In: Organic and biomolecular chemistry, ISSN 1477-0520, E-ISSN 1477-0539, Vol. 9, no 15, p. 5394-5406Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We present 2-dimensional potential energy surfaces and  transition states (TS) for water attack on a series of substituted phosphate monoester monoanions at the DFT level of theory, comparing a standard 6-31++g(d,p) basis set with a larger triple-zeta (augmented cc-pVTZ) basis set. Small fluorinated model compounds are used to simulate increasing leaving group stability without adding further geometrical complexity to the system. We demonstrate that whilst changing the leaving group causes little qualitative change in the potential energy surfaces (with the exception of the system with the most electron withdrawing leaving group, CF3O-, in which the associative pathway changes from a stepwise AN + DN pathway to a concerted ANDN pathway), there is a quantitative change in relative gas-phase and solution barriers for the two competing pathways. In line with previous studies, in the case of OCH3, the barriers for the associative and dissociative pathways are similar in solution, and the two pathways are equally viable and indistinguishable in solution. However, significantly increasing the stability of the leaving group (decreasing proton affinity, PA) results in the progressive favouring of a stepwise dissociative, DN + AN, mechanism over associative mechanisms.

  • 5.
    Kamerlin, Shina Caroline Lynn
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Organic Chemistry.
    Theoretical comparison of p-nitrophenyl phosphate and sulfate Hydrolysis in aqueous solution: implications for enzyme-catalyzed sulfuryl transfer2011In: Journal of Organic Chemistry, ISSN 0022-3263, E-ISSN 1520-6904, Vol. 76, no 22, p. 9228-9238Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Both phosphoryl and sulfuryl transfers are ubiquitous in biology, being involved in a wide range of processes, ranging from cell division to apoptosis. Additionally, it is becoming increasingly clear that enzymes that can catalyze phosphoryl transfer can often cross-catalyze sulfuryl transfer (and vice versa). However, while there have been extensive experimental and theoretical studies performed on phosphoryl transfer, the body of available research on sulfuryl transfer is comparatively much smaller. The present work presents a direct theoretical comparison of p-nitrophenyl phosphate and sulfate monoester hydrolysis, both of which are considered prototype systems for probing phosphoryl and sulfuryl transfer, respectively. Specifically, free energy surfaces have been generated using density functional theory, by initial geometry optimization in PCM using the 6-31+G* basis set and the B3LYP density functional, followed by single-point calculations using the larger 6-311+G** basis set and the COSMO continuum model. The resulting surfaces have been then used to identify the relevant transition states, either by further unconstrained geometry optimization or from the surface itself where possible. Additionally, configurational entropies were evaluated using a combination of the quasiharmonic approximation and the restraint release approach and added to the calculated activation barriers as a correction. Finally, the overall activation entropy was estimated by approximating the solvent contribution to the total activation entropy using the Langevin dipoles solvation model. We have reproduced both the experimentally observed activation barriers and the observed trend in the activation entropies with reasonable accuracy, as well as providing a comparison of calculated and observed 15N and 18O kinetic isotope effects. We demonstrate that, counterintuitively, the hydrolysis of the p-nitrophenyl sulfate proceeds through a more expansive pathway than its phosphate analogue. Additionally, we show that the solvation effects upon moving from the ground state to the transition state are quite different for both reactions, suggesting that the enzymes that catalyze these reactions would need active sites with quite different electrostatic preorganization for the efficient catalysis of either reaction (despite which many enzymes can catalyze both phosphoryl and sulfuryl transfer). We believe that such a comparative study is an important foundation for understanding the molecular basis for phosphate–sulfate cross-promiscuity within members of the alkaline phosphatase superfamily.

  • 6. Plotnikov, Nikolay V.
    et al.
    Kamerlin, Shina C. L.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Organic Chemistry.
    Warshel, Arieh
    Paradynamics: an effective and reliable model for ab initio QM/MM free-energy calculations and related tasks2011In: Journal of Physical Chemistry B, ISSN 1520-6106, E-ISSN 1520-5207, Vol. 115, no 24, p. 7950-7962Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Recent years have seen tremendous effort in the development of approaches with which to obtain quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics (QM/MM) free energies for reactions in the condensed phase. Nevertheless, there remain significant challenges to address, particularly, the high computational cost involved in performing proper configurational sampling and, in particular, in obtaining ab initio QM/MM (QM(ai)/MM) free-energy surfaces. One increasingly popular approach that seems to offer an ideal way to progress in this direction is the elegant metadynamics (MTD) approach. However, in the current work, we point out the subtle efficiency problems associated with this approach and illustrate that we have at hand what is arguably a more powerful approach. More specifically, we demonstrate the effectiveness of an updated version of our original idea of using a classical reference potential for QM(ai)/MM calculations [J. Phys. Chem. 1995, 99, 17516)], which we refer to as paradynamics (PD). This approach is based on the use of an empirical valence bond (EVB) reference potential, which is already similar to the real ab initio potential. The reference potential is fitted to the ab initio potential by an iterative and, to a great degree, automated refinement procedure. The corresponding free-energy profile is then constructed using the refined EVB potential, and the linear response approximation (LRA) is used to evaluate the QM(ai)/MM activation free-energy barrier. The automated refinement of the EVB surface (and thus the reduction of the difference between the reference and ab initio potentials) is a key factor in accelerating the convergence of the LRA approach. We apply our PD approach to a test reaction, namely, the SN2 reaction between a chloride ion and methyl chloride, and demonstrate that, at present, this approach is far more powerful and cost-effective than the metadynamics approach (at least in its current implementation). We also discuss the general features of the PD approach in terms of its ability to explore complex systems and clarify that it is not a specialized approach limited to only accelerating QM(ai)/MM calculations with proper sampling, but rather can be used in a wide variety of applications. In fact, we point out that the use of a reference (CG) potential coupled with its PD refinement, as well as our renormalization approach, provides very general and powerful strategies that can be used very effectively to explore any property that has been studied by the MTD approach.

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