Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department


Major Professor

Wayne C. Guida


FabH, Homology Modeling, Malaria, Molecular Dynamics, Virtual Screening


The main aim of the study in this thesis was to use structure-based protocols to design new drugs for enzymes, DXS and DXR in the non mevalonate pathway. Another aim of this study was to identify the dimer interface in E.coli FabH as an allosteric binding site for designing new class of anti-infective drugs. We have attempted to identify potential inhibitors for DXS by docking the NCI Diversity set compounds, compound libraries available from GSK-MMV and St. Jude's Children's research center. FabH dimer interface has been identified as a potential target using SiteMap, Alanine mutagenesis and docking studies.

The first chapter gives an overview of the computational methods. The next two chapters briefly introduce the biological targets in the author's study. Chapter two explains the importance of non-mevalonate pathway in microbes. Different enzymes in the non-mevalonate pathway are discussed and the importance of terpenoids in biological processes and also the use of terpenoids as drugs have been extensively discussed in this chapter. The crystal structures available for DXS and DXR are also discussed. Chapter three brings out the importance of FabH as an anti-infective target. Crystal structure of FabH E.coli is discussed and the importance of FabH as a dimer has been discussed in this chapter.

Chapter 3 describes the methods, homology models generated, and analysis from docking studies. The homology models for PvDXS and PvDXR have been used in this study to identify potential inhibitors. Domain swapping and the structural organization of PvDXS before and after domain swaping are discussed. Identification of domain swaping in PvDXS using entropy changes has been extensively discussed.

Chapter 4 focuses on FabH (Fatty Acid Biosynthesis, enzyme H also referred to as β-ketoacyl-ACP-synthase III) dimer interface as an allosteric target. SiteMap analysis and MD simulations on the FabH monomer and dimer structures revealed the dimer interface as a binding region. Further analyses were done by mutagenesis studies on the Phe87 residue, a key residue at the dimer interface region and validating the results using docking studies. NCI Diversity Set compounds were docked at the dimer interface of FabH, which revealed that compounds NSC91529 and NSC19803 docked best at the dimer interface region with the phenyl ring of both the compounds