Conformational behavior of flavin adenine dinucleotide: Conserved stereochemistry in bound and free states

Gopi Kuppuraj*, Dennis Kruise, Kei Yura

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Metabolic enzymes utilize the cofactor flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) to catalyze essential biochemical reactions. Because these enzymes have been implicated in disease pathways, it will be necessary to target them via FAD-based structural analogues that can either activate/inhibit the enzymatic activity. To achieve this, it is important to explore the conformational space of FAD in the enzyme-bound and free states. Herein, we analyze X-ray crystallographic data of the enzyme-bound FAD conformations and sample conformations of the molecule in explicit water by molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Enzyme-bound FAD conformations segregate into five distinct groups based on dihedral angle principal component analysis (PCA). A notable feature in the bound FADs is that the adenine base and isoalloxazine ring are oppositely oriented relative to the pyrophosphate axis characterized by near trans hypothetical dihedral angle "δV" values. Not surprisingly, MD simulations in water show final compact but not perfectly stacked ring structures in FAD. Simulation data did not reveal noticeable changes in overall conformational dynamics of the dinucleotide in reduced and oxidized forms and in the presence and/or absence of ions. During unfolding - folding dynamics, the riboflavin moiety is more flexible than the adenosine monophosphate group in the molecule. Conversely, the isoalloxazine ring is more stable than the variable adenine base. The pyrophosphate group depicts an unusually highly organized fluctuation illustrated by its dihedral angle distribution. Conformations sampled from enzymes and MD are quantified. The extent to which the protein shifts the distribution from the unbound state is discussed in terms of prevalent FAD shapes and dihedral angle population. (Graph Presented).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13486-13497
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Issue number47
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Nov 26
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry


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