Motivation: Efficient fitting tools are needed to take advantage of a fast growth of atomic models of protein domains from crystallography or comparative modeling, and low-resolution density maps of larger molecular assemblies. Here, we report a novel fitting algorithm for the exhaustive and fast overlay of partial high-resolution models into a low-resolution density map. The method incorporates a fast rotational search based on spherical harmonics (SH) combined with a simple translational scanning.
Results: This novel combination makes it possible to accurately dock atomic structures into low-resolution electron-density maps in times ranging from seconds to a few minutes. The high-efficiency achieved with simulated and experimental test cases preserves the exhaustiveness needed in these heterogeneous-resolution merging tools. The results demonstrate its efficiency, robustness and high-throughput coverage.
Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.