Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) are important biochemical processes that represent a major challenge in modern biology. Current approaches, which include high-throughput screening and computer aided ligand design, have limitations regarding the identification of hit matter. This current investigation focuses on computational study for protein-protein docking of hypoxia inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α), a tumor inducible factor, and Raf-1 kinase inhibitory protein (RKIP), a tumor metastasis suppressor. These are individually crystallized structures of interacting proteins, which interact to generate a conformational space. HIF activity in pancreatic tumors is determined by hypoxia and HIF-1α subunit availability. RKIP can be used as a prognostic indicator in a number of tumors. The interaction of RKIP with HIF-1α protects against pancreatic cancer (PC) metastasis by inhibiting its hypoxia function. We have explored the binding affinity between both the proteins with the HADDOCK (high ambiguity driven protein-protein docking) server, which determined that 158 structures in 11 clusters represent 79.0% of water-refined models. Of the best 10 clusters, the structures of cluster 2 were found to be better, as they had the lowest Z-score. Further supporting HIF-1α-RKIP interaction, pulldown assay has shown dissociation of RKIP from HIF-1α after CoCl2 treatment in both PC cell lines.

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PubMed