The concept of metal chelation is based on simple coordination chemistry. The development of an ideal metal chelator that completely and selectively removes toxic metals from a specific metal binding site in proteins is required to prevent and or inhibit a variety of diseases, among them neurodegenerative diseases. This work examines neuropeptide Y (NPY) as a Zn2+ and Cu2+ chelator agent. NPY is a natural peptide that is produced in the human body; therefore, it is not a toxic agent and the complex that it forms is not toxic as well. Our simulations reveal that NPY has an efficient Zn2+ chelation activity but is less effective in chelating Cu2+. Moreover, while NPY demonstrates several conformations, the metal chelation occurs more efficiently in its native structure. Beyond the exploration of the activity of NPY as a Zn2+ and Cu2+ chelator agent, this work provides an insight into the molecular mechanisms of the chelation of these metals at the molecular level. The outcomes from this work may guide future experimental studies to examine NPY in metal chelation therapy for neurodegenerative diseases.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Inorganic Chemistry