Erythromycin A and roxithromycin are clinically important macrolide antibiotics that selectively act on the bacterial 50S large ribosomal subunit to inhibit bacteria's protein elongation process by blocking the exit tunnel for the nascent peptide away from ribosome. The detailed molecular mechanism of macrolide binding is yet to be elucidated as it is currently known to the most general idea only. In this study, molecular dynamics (MD) simulation was employed to study their interaction at the molecular level, and the binding free energies for both systems were calculated using the molecular mechanics Poisson-Boltzmann surface area (MM-PBSA) method. The calculated binding free energies for both systems were slightly overestimated compared to the experimental values, but individual energy terms enabled better understanding in the binding for both systems. Decomposition of results into residue basis was able to show the contribution of each residue at the binding pocket toward the binding affinity of macrolides and hence identified several key interacting residues that were in agreement with previous experimental and computational data. Results also indicated the contributions from van der Waals are more important and significant than electrostatic contribution in the binding of macrolides to the binding pocket. The findings from this study are expected to contribute to the understanding of a detailed mechanism of action in a quantitative matter and thus assisting in the development of a safer macrolide antibiotic.
Isocitrate lyase (ICL) is the first enzyme involved in glyoxylate cycle. Many plants and microorganisms are relying on glyoxylate cycle enzymes to survive upon downregulation of tricarboxylic acid cycle (TCA cycle), especially Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB). In fact, ICL is a potential drug target for MTB in dormancy. With the urge for new antitubercular drug to overcome tuberculosis treat such as multidrug resistant strain and HIV-coinfection, the pace of drug discovery has to be increased. There are many approaches to discovering potential inhibitor for MTB ICL and we hereby review the updated list of them. The potential inhibitors can be either a natural compound or synthetic compound. Moreover, these compounds are not necessary to be discovered only from MTB ICL, as it can also be discovered by a non-MTB ICL. Our review is categorized into four sections, namely, (a) MTB ICL with natural compounds; (b) MTB ICL with synthetic compounds; (c) non-MTB ICL with natural compounds; and (d) non-MTB ICL with synthetic compounds. Each of the approaches is capable of overcoming different challenges of inhibitor discovery. We hope that this paper will benefit the discovery of better inhibitor for ICL.
Previously, the hypothetical protein, KPN00728 from Klebsiella pneumoniae MGH78578 was the Succinate dehydrogenase (SDH) chain C subunit via structural prediction and molecular docking simulation studies. However, due to limitation in docking simulation, an in-depth understanding of how SDH interaction occurs across the transmembrane of mitochondria could not be provided.
Our previous study demonstrated that the effects of isoniazid (INH) on Mycobacterium tuberculosis at the cellular level varied according to the growth phases. In this study, the variations in the INH action on M. avium strain NCTC 8559 are reported. M. avium cells grown on Middlebrook 7H10 agar were harvested at different stages of their growth cycle, exposed to the minimum inhibitory concentration of INH, stained with acid-fast staining for morphological changes and acid fastness properties, and the number of colonies were evaluated for viability studies. The study demonstrated that M. avium NCTC 8559 cells at the initial and fragmentation stages of the growth cycle were most susceptible to INH.
A series of dimeric naphthoquinones containing natural 2-hydroxy-1-4-naphthoquinone moiety was designed, synthesized, and evaluated against neuraminidase of H5N1 virus. p-hydroxy derivatives showed higher inhibition when compared to p-halogenated compounds. Molecular docking studies conducted with H5N1 neuraminidase clearly demonstrated different binding modes of the most active compound onto the open and closed conformations of loop 150. The results thus provide not only evidences of a novel scaffold evaluated as inhibitor, but also a rational explanation involving molecular modeling and the role of loop 150 in the binding.
Twenty percent of genes that encode for hypothetical proteins from Klebsiella pneumoniae MGH78578 were identified, leading to KPN00728 and KPN00729 after bioinformatics analysis. Both open reading frames showed high sequence homology to Succinate dehydrogenase Chain C (SdhC) and D (SdhD) from Escherichia coli. Recently, KPN00729 was assigned as SdhD. KPN00728 thus remains of particular interest as no annotated genes from the complete genome sequence encode for SdhC. We discovered KPN00728 has a missing region with conserved residues important for ubiquinone (UQ) and heme group binding. Structure and function prediction of KPN00728 coupled with secondary structure analysis and transmembrane topology showed KPN00728 adopts SDH-(subunit C)-like structure. To further probe its functionality, UQ was docked on the built model (consisting KPN00728 and KPN00729) and formation of hydrogen bonds between UQ and Ser27, Arg31 (KPN00728) and Tyr84 (KPN00729) further reinforces and supports that KPN00728 is indeed SDH. This is the first report on the structural and function prediction of KPN00728 of K. pneumoniae MGH78578 as SdhC.
This study aimed to examine the influence of the traditional leadership qualities towards to develop community cohesion in the Iban community in Malaysia. A quantitative approach was used to conduct this study, where data were collected through a self-administered survey questionnaire from 210 chiefs in the Iban longhouse at the Pakan District in Sarawak, Malaysia. A pre-tested questionaire was administrered to the respondents using a simple random sampling in the District of Pakan, Sarawak. The leadership quality was measured based on the leadership traits, leadership style, leadership behaviour, situational leadership, and trsnformational leadership; while the community cohesion was measured by a sense of belonging, social alienation, social support, rootedness, social solidarity, and social ties. The results of the correlation and regression analysis showed that the traditional leadership qualities had a significant correlation with the development of social cohesion. The findings proved that the traditional leadership is essential to increase community cohesion in the Iban community. The findings would be important guideline to the development thinkers, practitioners, community leaders, and development institutions.
The government of Maldives considers that the enjoyment of the highest attainable level of health is a basic right of every citizen. Thus it lays emphasis on the accessibility and affordability of health care services. In order to achieve these objectives, it is very important to expand curative services as well as preventive services in the country. The major hurdles faced by the country are result of the inherent structural problem faced by the county which leads to sever diseconomies of scale in the provision of healthcare services. Community and individual involvement and self-reliance are very important to achieve Health for All by the Year 200 AD. Community participation is one of the domains of community capacity building in a small island country. It is one of the mechanisms to empower people to take part in community development. In this paper, the nature, the dimensions of community participation, and its role and scope in implementation of different components of primary health care have been described. The health services in public and curative care have been briefed. Some of the achievements in health sector have also been briefly presented.
Electroplated nickel coating on cemented carbide is a potential pretreatment technique for providing an interlayer prior to diamond deposition on the hard metal substrate. The electroplated nickel coating is expected to be of high quality, for example, indicated by having adequate thickness and uniformity. Electroplating parameters should be set accordingly for this purpose. In this study, the gap distances between the electrodes and duration of electroplating process are the investigated variables. Their effect on the coating thickness and uniformity was analyzed and quantified using design of experiment. The nickel deposition was carried out by electroplating in a standard Watt's solution keeping other plating parameters (current: 0.1 Amp, electric potential: 1.0 V, and pH: 3.5) constant. The gap distance between anode and cathode varied at 5, 10, and 15 mm, while the plating time was 10, 20, and 30 minutes. Coating thickness was found to be proportional to the plating time and inversely proportional to the electrode gap distance, while the uniformity tends to improve at a large electrode gap. Empirical models of both coating thickness and uniformity were developed within the ranges of the gap distance and plating time settings, and an optimized solution was determined using these models.
Multiple sequence alignment was performed against eight proteases from the Flaviviridae family using ClustalW to illustrate conserved domains. Two sets of prediction approaches were applied and the results compared. Firstly, secondary structure prediction was performed using available structure prediction servers. The second approach made use of the information on the secondary structures extracted from structure prediction servers, threading techniques and DSSP database of some of the templates used in the threading techniques. Consensus on the one-dimensional secondary structure of Den2 protease was obtained from each approach and evaluated against data from the recently crystallised Den2 NS2B/NS3 obtained from the Protein Data Bank (PDB). Results indicated the second approach to show higher accuracy compared to the use of prediction servers only. Thus, it is plausible that this approach is applicable to the initial stage of structural studies of proteins with low amino acid sequence homology against other available proteins in the PDB.
The continuing rise in tuberculosis incidence and the problem of drug resistance strains have prompted the research on new drug candidates and the mechanism of drug resistance. Molecular docking and molecular dynamics simulation (MD) were performed to study the binding of isoniazid onto the active site of Mycobacterium tuberculosis enoyl-acyl carrier protein reductase (InhA) in an attempt to address the mycobacterial resistance against isoniazid. Results show that isonicotinic acyl-NADH (INADH) has an extremely high binding affinity toward the wild type InhA by forming stronger interactions compared to the parent drug (isoniazid) (INH). Due to the increase of hydrophobicity and reduction in the side chain's volume of A94 of mutant type InhA, both INADH and the mutated protein become more mobile. Due to this reason, the molecular interactions of INADH with mutant type are weaker than that observed with the wild type. However, the reduced interaction caused by the fluctuation of INADH and the mutant protein only inflected minor resistance in the mutant strain as inferred from free energy calculation. MD results also showed there exists a water-mediated hydrogen bond between INADH and InhA. However, the bridged water molecule is only present in the INADH-wild type complex, reflecting the putative role of the water molecule in the binding of INADH to the wild type protein. The results support the assumption that the conversion of prodrug isoniazid into its active form INADH is mediated by KatG as a necessary step prior to target binding on InhA. Our findings also contribute to a better understanding of INH resistance in mutant type.
Macrolides are a group of diverse class of naturally occurring and synthetic antibiotics made of macrocyclic-lactone ring carrying one or more sugar moieties linked to various atoms of the lactone ring. These macrolides selectively bind to a single high affinity site on the prokaryotic 50S ribosomal subunit, making them highly effective towards a wide range of bacterial pathogens. The understanding of binding between macrolides and ribosome serves a good basis in elucidating how they work at the molecular level and these findings would be important in rational drug design. Here, we report refinement of reconstructed PDB structure of erythromycin-ribosome system using molecular dynamics (MD) simulation. Interesting findings were observed in this refinement stage that could improve the understanding of the binding of erythromycin A (ERYA) onto the 50S subunit. The results showed ERYA was highly hydrated and water molecules were found to be important in bridging hydrogen bond at the binding pocket during the simulation time. ERYA binding to ribosome was also strengthened by hydrogen bond network and hydrophobic interactions between the antibiotic and the ribosome. Our MD simulation also demonstrated direct interaction of ERYA with Domains II, V and with C1773 (U1782EC), a residue in Domain IV that has yet been described of its role in ERYA binding. It is hoped that this refinement will serve as a starting model for a further enhancement of our understanding towards the binding of ERYA to ribosome.
Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA), are biodegradable polyesters derived from many microorganisms such as the pseudomonads. These polyesters are in great demand especially in the packaging industries, the medical line as well as the paint industries. The enzyme responsible in catalyzing the formation of PHA is PHA synthase. Due to the limited structural information, its functional properties including catalysis are lacking. Therefore, this study seeks to investigate the structural properties as well as its catalytic mechanism by predicting the three-dimensional (3D) model of the Type II Pseudomonas sp. USM 4-55 PHA synthase 1 (PhaC1P.sp USM 4-55).
Tuberculosis (TB) still remains a global threat due to the emergence of a drug-resistant strain. Instead of focusing on the drug target of active stage TB, we are highlighting the isocitrate lyase (ICL) at the dormant stage TB. ICL is one of the persistent factors for Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) to survive during the dormant phase. In addition, the absence of ICL in human has made ICL a potential drug target for TB therapy. However, the dynamic details of ICL which could give insights to the ICL-ligand interaction have yet to be solved. Therefore, a series of ICL dimer dynamics studies through molecular dynamics simulation were performed in this work. The ICL active site entrance gate closure is contributed to by hydrogen bonding and electrostatic interactions with the C-terminal. Analysis suggested that the open-closed behavior of the ICL active site entrance depends on the type of ligand present in the active site. We also observed four residues (Ser91, Asp108, Asp153, and Cys191) which could possibly be the nucleophiles for nucleophilic attack on the cleavage of isocitrate at the C2-C3bond. We hope that the elucidation of ICL dynamics can benefit future works such as lead identification or antibody design against ICL for TB therapeutics.
Over the years, coronaviruses (CoV) have posed a severe public health threat, causing an increase in mortality and morbidity rates throughout the world. The recent outbreak of a novel coronavirus, named severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) caused the current Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic that affected more than 215 countries with over 23 million cases and 800,000 deaths as of today. The situation is critical, especially with the absence of specific medicines or vaccines; hence, efforts toward the development of anti-COVID-19 medicines are being intensively undertaken. One of the potential therapeutic targets of anti-COVID-19 drugs is the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2). ACE2 was identified as a key functional receptor for CoV associated with COVID-19. ACE2, which is located on the surface of the host cells, binds effectively to the spike protein of CoV, thus enabling the virus to infect the epithelial cells of the host. Previous studies showed that certain flavonoids exhibit angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibition activity, which plays a crucial role in the regulation of arterial blood pressure. Thus, it is being postulated that these flavonoids might also interact with ACE2. This postulation might be of interest because these compounds also show antiviral activity in vitro. This article summarizes the natural flavonoids with potential efficacy against COVID-19 through ACE2 receptor inhibition.
Several histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACis) are known to increase Survival Motor Neuron 2 (SMN2) expression for the therapy of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). We aimed to compare the effects of suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid (SAHA) and Dacinostat, a novel HDACi, on SMN2 expression and to elucidate their acetylation effects on the methylation of the SMN2. Cell-based assays using type I and type II SMA fibroblasts examined changes in transcript expressions, methylation levels and protein expressions. In silico methods analyzed the intermolecular interactions between each compound and HDAC2/HDAC7. SMN2 mRNA transcript levels and SMN protein levels showed notable increases in both cell types, except for Dacinostat exposure on type II cells. However, combined compound exposures showed less pronounced increase in SMN2 transcript and SMN protein level. Acetylation effects of SAHA and Dacinostat promoted demethylation of the SMN2 promoter. The in silico analyses revealed identical binding sites for both compounds in HDACs, which could explain the limited effects of the combined exposure. With the exception on the effect of Dacinostat in Type II cells, we have shown that SAHA and Dacinostat increased SMN2 transcript and protein levels and promoted demethylation of the SMN2 gene.
The objective of this study was to know the status of the foreign workers' access to public health services in Malaysia based on their utilization pattern. The utilization pattern covered a number of areas, such as frequency of using health services, status of using health services, choice and types of health institutions, and cost of health treatment. The study was conducted on six government hospitals in the Klang Valley area in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Data were collected from 600 foreign patients working in the country, using an interview method with a structured questionnaire. The results showed that the foreign workers' access to public health services was very low. The findings would be an important guideline to formulate an effective health service policy for the foreign workers in Malaysia.
Increased reports of oseltamivir (OTV)-resistant strains of the influenza virus, such as the H274Y mutation on its neuraminidase (NA), have created some cause for concern. Many studies have been conducted in the attempt to uncover the mechanism of OTV resistance in H274Y NA. However, most of the reported studies on H274Y focused only on the drug-bound system, so the direct effects of the mutation on NA itself prior to drug binding still remain unclear. Therefore, molecular dynamics simulations of NA in apo form, followed by principal component analysis and interaction energy calculations, were performed to investigate the structural changes of the NA binding site as a result of the H274Y mutation. It was observed that the disruption of the NA binding site due to the H274Y mutation was initiated by the repulsive effect of Y274 on the 250-loop, which in turn altered the hydrogen-bonding network around residue 274. The rotated W295 side chain caused the upward movement of the 340-loop. Consequently, sliding box docking results suggested that the binding pathway of OTV was compromised because of the disruption of this binding site. This study also highlighted the importance of the functional group at C6 of the sialic acid mimicry. It is hoped that these results will improve the understanding of OTV resistance and shed some light on the design of a novel anti-influenza drug.
Garcinia mangostana is a well-known tropical plant found mostly in South East Asia. The present study investigated acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and butyrylcholinesterase (BChE) inhibitory activities of G. mangostana extract and its chemical constituents using Ellman's colorimetric method. Cholinesterase inhibitory-guided approach led to identification of six bioactive prenylated xanthones showing moderate to potent cholinesterases inhibition with IC50 values of lower than 20.5 μM. The most potent inhibitor of AChE was garcinone C while γ-mangostin was the most potent inhibitor of BChE with IC50 values of 1.24 and 1.78 μM, respectively. Among the xanthones, mangostanol, 3-isomangostin, garcinone C and α-mangostin are AChE selective inhibitors, 8-deoxygartanin is a BChE selective inhibitor while γ-mangostin is a dual inhibitor. Preliminary structure-activity relationship suggests the importance of the C-8 prenyl and C-7 hydroxy groups for good AChE and BChE inhibitory activities. The enzyme kinetic studies indicate that both α-mangostin and garcinone C are mixed-mode inhibitors, while γ-mangostin is a non-competitive inhibitor of AChE. In contrast, both γ-mangostin and garcinone C are uncompetitive inhibitors, while α-mangostin is a mixed-mode inhibitor of BChE. Molecular docking studies revealed that α-mangostin, γ-mangostin and garcinone C interacts differently with the five important regions of AChE and BChE. The nature of protein-ligand interactions is mainly hydrophobic and hydrogen bonding. These bioactive prenylated xanthones are worthy for further investigations.