VH -VL interdomain dynamics observed by computer simulations and NMR.
ABSTRACT: The relative orientation of the two variable domains, VH and VL , influences the shape of the antigen binding site, that is, the paratope, and is essential to understand antigen specificity. ABangle characterizes the VH -VL orientation by using five angles and a distance and compares it to other known structures. Molecular dynamics simulations of antibody variable domains (Fvs) reveal fluctuations in the relative domain orientations. The observed dynamics between these domains are confirmed by NMR experiments on a single-chain variable fragment antibody (scFv) in complex with IL-1? and an antigen-binding fragment (Fab). The variability of these relative domain orientations can be interpreted as a structural feature of antibodies, which increases the antibody repertoire significantly and can enlarge the number of possible binding partners substantially. The movements of the VH and VL domains are well sampled with molecular dynamics simulations and are in agreement with the NMR ensemble. Fast Fourier transformation of the ABangle metrics allows to assign timescales of 0.1-10?GHz to the fastest collective interdomain movements. The results clearly show the necessity of dynamics to understand and characterize the favorable orientations of the VH and VL domains implying a considerable binding interface flexibility and reveal in all antibody fragments (Fab, scFv, and Fv) very similar VH -VL interdomain variations comparable to the distributions observed for known X-ray structures of antibodies. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT: Antibodies have become key players as therapeutic agents. The binding ability of antibodies is determined by the antigen-binding fragment (Fab), in particular the variable fragment region (Fv). Antigen-binding is mediated by the complementarity-determining regions consisting of six loops, each three of the heavy and light chain variable domain VH and VL . The relative orientation of the VH and VL domains influences the shape of the antigen-binding site and is a major objective in antibody design. In agreement with NMR experiments and molecular dynamics simulations, we show a considerable binding site flexibility in the low nanosecond timescale. Thus we suggest that this flexibility and its implications for binding and specificity should be considered when designing and optimizing therapeutic antibodies.
PROVIDER: S-EPMC7317758 | BioStudies |