The human postsynaptic density is an elaborate network comprising thousands of proteins, playing a vital role in the molecular events of learning and the formation of memory. Despite our growing knowledge of specific proteins and their interactions, atomic-level details of their full three-dimensional structure and their rearrangements are mostly elusive. Advancements in structural bioinformatics enabled us to depict the characteristic features of proteins involved in different processes aiding neurotransmission. We show that postsynaptic protein-protein interactions are mediated through the delicate balance of intrinsically disordered regions and folded domains, and this duality is also imprinted in the amino acid sequence. We introduce Diversity of Potential Interactions (DPI), a structure and regulation based descriptor to assess the diversity of interactions. Our approach reveals that the postsynaptic proteome has its own characteristic features and these properties reliably discriminate them from other proteins of the human proteome. Our results suggest that postsynaptic proteins are especially susceptible to forming diverse interactions with each other, which might be key in the reorganization of the postsynaptic density (PSD) in molecular processes related to learning and memory.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)