Structural models of viral insulin-like peptides and their analogs.

Academic Article


  • The insulin receptor (IR), the insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor (IGF1R), and the insulin/IGF1 hybrid receptors (hybR) are homologous transmembrane receptors. The peptide ligands, insulin and IGF1, exhibit significant structural homology and can bind to each receptor via site-1 and site-2 residues with distinct affinities. The variants of the Iridoviridae virus family show capability in expressing single-chain insulin/IGF1 like proteins, termed viral insulin-like peptides (VILPs), which can stimulate receptors from the insulin family. The sequences of VILPs lacking the central C-domain (dcVILPs) are known, but their structures in unbound and receptor-bound states have not been resolved to date. We report all-atom structural models of three dcVILPs (dcGIV, dcSGIV, and dcLCDV1) and their complexes with the receptors (μIR, μIGF1R, and μhybR), and probed the peptide/receptor interactions in each system using all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Based on the nonbonded interaction energies computed between each residue of peptides (insulin and dcVILPs) and the receptors, we provide details on residues establishing significant interactions. The observed site-1 insulin/μIR interactions are consistent with previous experimental studies, and a residue-level comparison of interactions of peptides (insulin and dcVILPs) with the receptors revealed that, due to sequence differences, dcVILPs also establish some interactions distinct from those between insulin and IR. We also designed insulin analogs and report enhanced interactions between some analogs and the receptors.
  • Authors

  • Gorai, Biswajit
  • Vashisth, Harish
  • Status

    Publication Date

  • January 2023
  • Keywords

  • Insulin
  • Models, Structural
  • Molecular Dynamics Simulation
  • Receptor, IGF Type 1
  • Receptor, Insulin
  • Viruses
  • insulin
  • insulin analogs
  • insulin receptor
  • molecular dynamics
  • viral peptides
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Start Page

  • 62
  • End Page

  • 73
  • Volume

  • 91
  • Issue

  • 1