Identification of natural small molecule modulators of MurB from Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi Ty2 strain using computational and biophysical approaches

Md Anzarul Haque, Mandeep Singh, Manish Kumar Tripathi, Abdul Samath Ethayathulla, Punit Kaur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The increase of antibiotic-resistant bacterial pathogens has created challenges in treatment and warranted the design of antibiotics against comparatively less exploited targets. The peptidoglycan (PG) biosynthesis delineates unique pathways for the design and development of a novel class of drugs. Mur ligases are an essential component of bacterial cell wall synthesis that play a pivotal role in PG biosynthesis to maintain internal osmotic pressure and cell shape. Inhibition of these enzymes can interrupt bacterial replication and hence, form attractive targets for drug discovery. In the present work, we focused on the PG biosynthesis pathway enzyme, UDP-N-acetylpyruvylglucosamine reductase, from Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi (stMurB). Biophysical characterization of purified StMurB was performed to gauge the molecular interactions and estimate thermodynamic stability for determination of attributes for possible therapeutic intervention. The thermal melting profile of MurB was monitored by circular dichroism and validated through differential scanning calorimetry experiment. Frequently used chemical denaturants, GdmCl and urea, were employed to study the chemical-induced denaturation of stMurB. In the search for natural compound-based inhibitors, against this important drug target, an in silico virtual screening based investigation was conducted with modeled stMurB structure. The three top hits (quercetin, berberine, and scopoletin) returned were validated for complex stability through molecular dynamics simulation. Further, fluorescence binding studies were undertaken for the selected natural compounds with stMurB alone and with NADPH bound form. The compounds scopoletin and berberine, displayed lesser binding to stMurB whereas quercetin exhibited stronger binding affinity than NADPH. This study suggests that quercetin can be evolved as an inhibitor of stMurB enzyme.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)363-379
Number of pages17
JournalProteins: Structure, Function and Bioinformatics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • MurB
  • S. Typhi
  • differential scanning calorimetry
  • molecular docking
  • natural compound inhibitors
  • spectroscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Structural Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology


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