Journal article

Recharging your fats : CHARMM36 parameters for neutral lipids triacylglycerol and diacylglycerol


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  • 20.11.2021
Published in:
  • Biophysical Reports. - 2021, vol. 1, no. 2, p. 100034
English Neutral lipids (NLs) are an abundant class of cellular lipids. They are characterized by the total lack of charged chemical groups in their structure, and, as a consequence, they play a major role in intracellular lipid storage. NLs that carry a glycerol backbone, such as triacylglycerols (TGs) and diacylglycerols (DGs), are also involved in the biosynthetic pathway of cellular phospholipids, and they have recently been the subject of numerous structural investigations by means of atomistic molecular dynamics simulations. However, conflicting results on the physicochemical behavior of NLs were observed depending on the nature of the atomistic force field used. Here, we show that current phospholipid-derived CHARMM36 parameters for DGs and TGs cannot adequately reproduce interfacial properties of these NLs because of excessive hydrophilicity at the glycerol-ester region. By following a CHARMM36-consistent parameterization strategy, we develop improved parameters for both TGs and DGs that are compatible with both cutoff-based and particle mesh Ewald schemes for the treatment of Lennard-Jones interactions. We show that our improved parameters can reproduce interfacial properties of NLs and their behavior in more complex lipid assemblies. We discuss the implications of our findings in the context of intracellular lipid storage and NLs’ cellular activity.
Faculté des sciences et de médecine
Département de Biologie
  • English
Biological sciences
Open access status
Persistent URL

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