Quantitative Estimation of Cyclotide-Induced Bilayer Membrane Disruption by Lipid Extraction with Mesoscopic Simulation

03 March 2021, Version 1
This content is a preprint and has not undergone peer review at the time of posting.


Cyclotide-induced membrane disruption is studied at the microsecond timescale by Dissipative Particle Dynamics (DPD) to quantitatively estimate a kinetic rate constant for membrane lipid extraction with a “sandwich” interaction model where two bilayer membranes enclose a cyclotide/water compartment. The obtained bioactivity trends for cyclotides Kalata B1, Cycloviolacin O2 and selected mutants with different membrane types are in agreement with experimental findings: For all membranes investigated, Cycloviolacin O2 shows a higher lipid extraction activity than Kalata B1. The presence of cholesterol leads to a decreased cyclotide activity compared to cholesterol-free membranes. Phosphoethanolamine-rich membranes exhibit an increased membrane disruption. A cyclotide’s “hydrophobic patch” surface area is important for its bioactivity. A replacement of or with charged amino acid residues may lead to super-mutants with above-native activity but without simple charge-activity patterns. Cyclotide mixtures show linearly additive bioactivities without significant sub- or over-additive effects.


molecular simulation
mesoscopic simulation
Dissipative Particle Dynamics
Kalata B1
Cycloviolacin O2
bilayer membrane
plasma membrane
structure-activity relationship
lipid extraction


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