Molecules (Basel, Switzerland)

Structure Based Modeling of Small Molecules Binding to the TLR7 by Atomistic Level Simulations.

PMID 26007168


Toll-Like Receptors (TLR) are a large family of proteins involved in the immune system response. Both the activation and the inhibition of these receptors can have positive effects on several diseases, including viral pathologies and cancer, therefore prompting the development of new compounds. In order to provide new indications for the design of Toll-Like Receptor 7 (TLR7)-targeting drugs, the mechanism of interaction between the TLR7 and two important classes of agonists (imidazoquinoline and adenine derivatives) was investigated through docking and Molecular Dynamics simulations. To perform the computational analysis, a new model for the dimeric form of the receptors was necessary and therefore created. Qualitative and quantitative differences between agonists and inactive compounds were determined. The in silico results were compared with previous experimental observations and employed to define the ligand binding mechanism of TLR7.