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Effects of All-Atom Molecular Mechanics Force Fields on Amyloid Peptide Assembly: The Case of Aβ16–22 Dimer

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journal contribution
posted on 2019-01-11, 00:00 authored by Viet Hoang Man, Xibing He, Philippe Derreumaux, Beihong Ji, Xiang-Qun Xie, Phuong H. Nguyen, Junmei Wang
We investigated the effects of 17 widely used atomistic molecular mechanics force fields (MMFFs) on the structures and kinetics of amyloid peptide assembly. To this end, we performed large-scale all-atom molecular dynamics simulations in explicit water on the dimer of the seven-residue fragment of the Alzheimer’s amyloid-β peptide, Aβ16–22, for a total time of 0.34 ms. We compared the effects of these MMFFs by analyzing various global reaction coordinates, secondary structure contents, the fibril population, the in-register and out-of-register architectures, and the fibril formation time at 310 K. While the AMBER94, AMBER99, and AMBER12SB force fields do not predict any β-sheets, the seven force fields, AMBER96, GROMOS45a3, GROMOS53a5, GROMOS53a6, GROMOS43a1, GROMOS43a2, and GROMOS54a7, form β-sheets rapidly. In contrast, the following five force fields, AMBER99-ILDN, AMBER14SB, CHARMM22*, CHARMM36, and CHARMM36m, are the best candidates for studying amyloid peptide assembly, as they provide good balances in terms of structures and kinetics. We also investigated the assembly mechanisms of dimeric Aβ16–22 and found that the fibril formation rate is predominantly controlled by the total β-strand content.