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Impact of Silane Monolayers on the Adsorption of Streptavidin on Silica and Its Subsequent Interactions with Biotin: Molecular Dynamics and Steered Molecular Dynamics Simulations

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posted on 24.07.2020, 17:35 by Solène Lecot, Yann Chevolot, Magali Phaner-Goutorbe, Christelle Yeromonahos
Protein adsorption on surfaces is used in analytical tools as an immobilization mean to trap the analyte to be detected. However, protein adsorption can lead to a conformational change in the protein structure, resulting in a loss of bioactivity. Here, we study adsorption of a streptavidin–biotin complex on amorphous SiO2 surfaces functionalized with five different silane self-assembled monolayers by all-atom molecular dynamics simulations. We find that the streptavidin global conformational change, as well as the nature of residues with high mobility, depends on the alkyl chain length and head-group charge of silane molecules. Effects on interactions with biotin are further investigated by steered molecular dynamics (SMD) simulations, which mimics atomic force microscopy (AFM) with the biotin attached on the tip. We show the combined effects of adsorption-induced global conformational changes and of the position of residues with high mobility on the streptavidin-biotin rupture force. By comparing our results to experimental and SMD rupture forces obtained in water, without any surface, we conclude that silane with uncharged and short alkyl chains allows streptavidin immobilization, while keeping biotin interactions better than silanes with long alkyl chains or charged head groups.