Molecular modeling study of the differential ligand-receptor interaction at the mu, delta and kappa opioid receptors

J Comput Aided Mol Des. 1999 Jul;13(4):397-407. doi: 10.1023/a:1008079823736.


3D models of the opioid receptors mu, delta and kappa were constructed using BUNDLE, an in-house program to build de novo models of G-protein coupled receptors at the atomic level. Once the three opioid receptors were constructed and before any energy refinement, models were assessed for their compatibility with the results available from point-site mutations carried out on these receptors. In a subsequent step, three selective antagonists to each of three receptors (naltrindole, naltrexone and nor-binaltorphamine) were docked onto each of the three receptors and subsequently energy minimized. The nine resulting complexes were checked for their ability to explain known results of structure-activity studies. Once the models were validated, analysis of the distances between different residues of the receptors and the ligands were computed. This analysis permitted us to identify key residues tentatively involved in direct interaction with the ligand.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Models, Molecular
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Receptors, Opioid / chemistry
  • Receptors, Opioid / metabolism*
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid


  • Receptors, Opioid