Protein structure quality assessment based on the distance profiles of consecutive backbone Cα atoms

Chakraborty, Sandeep ; Venkatramani, Ravindra ; Rao, Basuthkar J. ; Asgeirsson, Bjarni ; Dandekar, Abhaya M. (2013) Protein structure quality assessment based on the distance profiles of consecutive backbone Cα atoms F1000Research, 2 . Article ID 211, 12 pages. ISSN 2046-1402


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Predicting the three dimensional native state structure of a protein from its primary sequence is an unsolved grand challenge in molecular biology. Two main computational approaches have evolved to obtain the structure from the protein sequence - ab initio/de novo methods and template-based modeling - both of which typically generate multiple possible native state structures. Model quality assessment programs (MQAP) validate these predicted structures in order to identify the correct native state structure. Here, we propose a MQAP for assessing the quality of protein structures based on the distances of consecutive Cα atoms. We hypothesize that the root-mean-square deviation of the distance of consecutive Cα (RDCC) atoms from the ideal value of 3.8 Å, derived from a statistical analysis of high quality protein structures (top100H database), is minimized in native structures. Based on tests with the top100H set, we propose a RDCC cutoff value of 0.012 Å, above which a structure can be filtered out as a non-native structure. We applied the RDCC discriminator on decoy sets from the Decoys 'R' Us database to show that the native structures in all decoy sets tested have RDCC below the 0.012 Å cutoff. While most decoy sets were either indistinguishable using this discriminator or had very few violations, all the decoy structures in the fisa decoy set were discriminated by applying the RDCC criterion. This highlights the physical non-viability of the fisa decoy set, and possible issues in benchmarking other methods using this set. The source code and manual is made available at and permanently available on 10.5281/zenodo.7134.

Item Type:Article
Source:Copyright of this article belongs to F1000 Research Ltd.
ID Code:106815
Deposited On:19 Jun 2017 12:34
Last Modified:19 Jun 2017 12:35

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