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Proteins ; 89(2): 163-173, 2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-745464


Human interleukin-6 (hIL-6) is a multifunctional cytokine that regulates immune and inflammatory responses in addition to metabolic and regenerative processes and cancer. hIL-6 binding to the IL-6 receptor (IL-6Rα) induces homodimerization and recruitment of the glycoprotein (gp130) to form a hexameric signaling complex. Anti-IL-6 and IL-6R antibodies are clinically approved inhibitors of IL-6 signaling pathway for treating rheumatoid arthritis and Castleman's disease, respectively. There is a potential to develop novel small molecule IL-6 antagonists derived from understanding the structural basis for IL-6/IL-6Rα interactions. Here, we combine homology modeling with extensive molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to examine the association of hIL-6 with IL-6Rα. A comparison with MD of apo hIL-6 reveals that the binding of hIL-6 to IL-6Rα induces structural and dynamic rearrangements in the AB loop region of hIL-6, disrupting intraprotein contacts and increasing the flexibility of residues 48 to 58 of the AB loop. In contrast, due to the involvement of residues 59 to 78 in forming contacts with the receptor, these residues of the AB loop are observed to rigidify in the presence of the receptor. The binary complex is primarily stabilized by two pairs of salt bridges, Arg181 (hIL-6)- Glu182 (IL-6Rα) and Arg184 (hIL-6)- Glu183 (IL-6Rα) as well as hydrophobic and aromatic stacking interactions mediated essentially by Phe residues in both proteins. An interplay of electrostatic, hydrophobic, hydrogen bonding, and aromatic stacking interactions facilitates the formation of the hIL-6/IL-6Rα complex.

Apoproteins/chemistry , Interleukin-6/chemistry , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Receptors, Interleukin-6/chemistry , Apoproteins/metabolism , Binding Sites , Crystallography, X-Ray , Humans , Hydrogen Bonding , Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions , Interleukin-6/metabolism , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation, alpha-Helical , Protein Conformation, beta-Strand , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Receptors, Interleukin-6/metabolism , Static Electricity , Structural Homology, Protein , Thermodynamics
Biochem Biophys Res Commun ; 535: 47-53, 2021 01 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-978223


The interaction of the multifunctional cytokine interleukin (IL)-6 and its receptor (IL-6R) is involved in various diseases, including not only autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis but also cancer and cytokine storms in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). In this study, systematic evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment (SELEX) against human IL-6R from mRNA-displayed unnatural peptide library ribosomally initiated and cyclized with m-(chloromethyl)benzoic acid (mClPh) incorporated by genetic code expansion (sense suppression) was performed using the PURE (Protein synthesis Using Recombinant Elements) system. A novel 13-mer unnatural mClPh-cyclized peptide that binds to the extracellular domain of IL-6R was discovered from an extremely diverse random peptide library. In vitro affinity maturation of IL-6R-binding unnatural mClPh-cyclized peptide from focused libraries was performed, identifying two IL-6R-binding unnatural mClPh-cyclized peptides by next-generation sequencing. Because cyclization can increase the protease resistance of peptides, novel IL-6R-binding mClPh-cyclized peptides discovered in this study have the potential to be used for a variety of research, therapeutic, and diagnostic applications involving IL-6/IL-6R signaling.

Benzoic Acid/chemistry , Peptides/chemistry , Receptors, Interleukin-6/chemistry , Ribosomes/chemistry , Cyclization , Genetic Code , Humans , Peptide Library , RNA, Messenger , SELEX Aptamer Technique