Structural features that predict real-value fluctuations of globular proteins

Proteins. 2012 May;80(5):1425-35. doi: 10.1002/prot.24040. Epub 2012 Feb 13.


It is crucial to consider dynamics for understanding the biological function of proteins. We used a large number of molecular dynamics (MD) trajectories of nonhomologous proteins as references and examined static structural features of proteins that are most relevant to fluctuations. We examined correlation of individual structural features with fluctuations and further investigated effective combinations of features for predicting the real value of residue fluctuations using the support vector regression (SVR). It was found that some structural features have higher correlation than crystallographic B-factors with fluctuations observed in MD trajectories. Moreover, SVR that uses combinations of static structural features showed accurate prediction of fluctuations with an average Pearson's correlation coefficient of 0.669 and a root mean square error of 1.04 Å. This correlation coefficient is higher than the one observed in predictions by the Gaussian network model (GNM). An advantage of the developed method over the GNMs is that the former predicts the real value of fluctuation. The results help improve our understanding of relationships between protein structure and fluctuation. Furthermore, the developed method provides a convienient practial way to predict fluctuations of proteins using easily computed static structural features of proteins.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Databases, Protein
  • Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions
  • Molecular Dynamics Simulation*
  • Protein Conformation
  • Proteins / chemistry*
  • Regression Analysis*
  • Support Vector Machine*


  • Proteins