Protein social behavior makes a stronger signal for partner identification than surface geometry

Elodie Laine, Alessandra Carbone


Cells are interactive living systems where proteins movements, interactions and regulation are substantially free from centralized management. How protein physico-chemical and geometrical properties determine who interact with whom remains far from fully understood. We show that characterizing how a protein behaves with many potential interactors in a complete cross-docking study leads to a sharp identification of its cellular/true/native partner(s). We define a sociability index, or S-index, reflecting whether a protein likes or not to pair with other proteins. Formally, we propose a suitable normalization function that accounts for protein sociability and we combine it with a simple interface-based (ranking) score to discriminate partners from non-interactors. We show that sociability is an important factor and that the normalization permits to reach a much higher discriminative power than shape complementarity docking scores. The social effect is also observed with more sophisticated docking algorithms. Docking conformations are evaluated using experimental binding sites. These latter approximate in the best possible way binding sites predictions, which have reached high accuracy in recent years. This makes our analysis help...Continue Reading


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