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Preferential binding of fullerene and fullerenol with the N-terminal and middle regions of amyloid beta peptide: an in silico investigation


Amyloid beta (Aβ) deposits are implicated in the pathogenesis of debilitating neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease. In the present study, the interactions of carbon-based nanoparticles (NPs) such as fullerene and fullerenol having different surface chemistry with Aβ were investigated using molecular dynamics simulations and docking studies. A detailed analysis of docking results showed that in 68% of the Aβ conformations, fullerene and fullerenol showed interactions with the N-terminal region of the peptide. However, the high-affinity binding site (E=-48.31 kJ/mol) of fullerene resides in the hydrophobic middle region of the peptide, whereas fullerenol interacts favorably with the charged N-terminal region with a binding energy of -50.42 kJ/mol. The above differences in binding could be attributed to the surface chemistry of fullerene and fullerenol. Moreover, the N-terminal and middle regions of Aβ play an important role in Aβ aggregation. Therefore, the binding of fullerene and fullerenol could inhibit amyloid aggregation. This information will be helpful in designing NPs for targeting amyloid-related disorders.

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