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Empirical Corrections to the Amber RNA Force Field with Target Metadynamics

Journal of Chemical Theory and Computation

American Chemical Society

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      Abstract

      The computational study of conformational transitions in nucleic acids still faces many challenges. For example, in the case of single stranded RNA tetranucleotides, agreement between simulations and experiments is not satisfactory due to inaccuracies in the force fields commonly used in molecular dynamics simulations. We here use experimental data collected from high-resolution X-ray structures to attempt an improvement of the latest version of the AMBER force field. A modified metadynamics algorithm is used to calculate correcting potentials designed to enforce experimental distributions of backbone torsion angles. Replica-exchange simulations of tetranucleotides including these correcting potentials show significantly better agreement with independent solution experiments for the oligonucleotides containing pyrimidine bases. Although the proposed corrections do not seem to be portable to generic RNA systems, the simulations revealed the importance of the α and ζ backbone angles for the modulation of the RNA conformational ensemble. The correction protocol presented here suggests a systematic procedure for force-field refinement.

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        Polymorphic transitions in single crystals: A new molecular dynamics method

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          Canonical sampling through velocity-rescaling

          We present a new molecular dynamics algorithm for sampling the canonical distribution. In this approach the velocities of all the particles are rescaled by a properly chosen random factor. The algorithm is formally justified and it is shown that, in spite of its stochastic nature, a quantity can still be defined that remains constant during the evolution. In numerical applications this quantity can be used to measure the accuracy of the sampling. We illustrate the properties of this new method on Lennard-Jones and TIP4P water models in the solid and liquid phases. Its performance is excellent and largely independent on the thermostat parameter also with regard to the dynamic properties.
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            Author and article information

            Journal
            27153317
            4910146
            10.1021/acs.jctc.6b00299

            Unknown

            Computational chemistry & Modeling

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