Protein C-GeM: A Coarse-Grained Electron Model for Fast and Accurate Protein Electrostatics Prediction

XY Guan and I Leven and F Heidar-Zadeh and T Head-Gordon, JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL INFORMATION AND MODELING, 61, 4357-4369 (2021).

DOI: 10.1021/acs.jcim.1c00388

The electrostatic potential (ESP) is a powerful property for understanding and predicting electrostatic charge distributions that drive interactions between molecules. In this study, we compare various charge partitioning schemes including fitted charges, density-based quantum mechanical (QM) partitioning schemes, charge equilibration methods, and our recently introduced coarse-grained electron model, C-GeM, to describe the ESP for protein systems. When benchmarked against high quality density functional theory calculations of the ESP for tripeptides and the crambin protein, we find that the C-GeM model is of comparable accuracy to ab initio charge partitioning methods, but with orders of magnitude improvement in computational efficiency since it does not require either the electron density or the electrostatic potential as input.

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