The Laboratoire International Associé between the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign was launched at the end of 2012. Its primary objective is to develop methods for high-performance molecular simulation with the aim of understanding the function of complex biological assemblies, transcending the frontiers of traditional disciplines by uniting mathematicians, physicists, theoretical chemists and biologists on both sides of the Atlantic. In France, the major contributors are located at the Université de Lorraine, the École des Ponts ParisTech, the Institut de Biologie et Chimie des Protéines-Université Claude Bernard and the Laboratoire d'Ingénierie des Systèmes Macromoléculaires-Université d'Aix-Marseille. In the United States, the contributors belong to the NIH Resource for Macromolecular Modeling and Bioinformatics. In Nancy, the partner is a theoretical chemistry and biophysics group incepted in 2003. Its expertise lies in describing the structure and the dynamic properties of the biological membrane and elucidating the mechanisms of the cell machinery. To attain this goal, its members leverage numerical simulations over size and timescales commensurate with the biological process at hand. Over the years, the team has gleaned milestone results in such diverse research areas as membrane transport, interaction with the biological membrane, membrane protein structure and function, as well as self-organized molecular systems. They also develop original approaches in the field of free-energy calculations, as well as that of intermolecular potentials.
Multiple-replica strategies for free-energy calculations in NAMD: Multiple-walker adaptive biasing force and walker selection rules. From the most powerful supercomputers to multicore desktops and laptops, parallel computing architectures have been in the mainstream for some time. However, numerical schemes for calculating free energies in molecular systems that directly leverage this hardware paradigm, usually taking the form of multiple-replica strategies, are just now on the cusp of becoming standard practice. Here, we present a modification of the popular molecular dynamics program NAMD that is envisioned to facilitate the use of powerful multiple-replica strategies to improve ergodic sampling for a specific class of free-energy methods known as adaptive biasing force. We describe the software implementation in a so-called multiple-walker context, alongside the interface that makes the proposed approach accessible to the end users. We further evaluate the performance of the adaptive biasing force multiple-walker strategy for a model system, namely, the reversible folding of a short peptide, and show, in particular, in regions of the transition coordinate where convergence of the free-energy calculation is encumbered by hidden barriers, that the multiple-walker strategy can yield far more reliable results in appreciably less real time on parallel architectures, relative to standard, single-replica calculations. Journal of Chemical Theory and Computation, 2015.
Correlation of bistranded clustered abasic DNA lesion processing with structural and dynamic DNA helix distortion.
Nucleic Acids Res.
2016, (44), 8588-8599.
Wang, S.; Zhao, T.; Shao, X.; Chipot, C.; Cai, W.
Complex movements in rotaxanes: Shuttling coupled with conformational transition of cyclodextrins
J. Phys. Chem. C
2016, (120), 19479-19486.
Gattuso, H.; Durand, E.; Bignon, E.; Morell, C.; Georgakilas, A. G.; Dumont, E.; Chipot, C.; Dehez, F.; Monari, A.
Repair rate of clustered abasic DNA lesions by human endonuclease: Molecular bases of sequence specificity
J. Phys. Chem. Lett
2016, (19), 3760-3765.