The cyclic contryphan motif CPxXPXC, a robust scaffold potentially useful as an ω mimic

Paul K. Pallaghy, Raymond S. Norton

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22 Citations (Scopus)


Contryphan-R, from venom of the cone-shell Conus radiatus, represents a novel cyclic peptide scaffold onto which residues may be grafted to mimic unrelated protein surfaces. Three substitutions were made at the x and X positions of the disulfide-bridged motif CPxXPXC, where X and x represent any L- and D-handed residues, respectively, P represents proline or hydroxyproline, and C a half-cystine. These substitutions were designed to mimic part of the pharmacophore of the unrelated globular polypeptide ω- conotoxin GVIA, which blocks N-type calcium channels. The structure of this engineered contryphan, YNK-contryphan-R ([D-Tyr4, Asn5, Lys7]contryphan-R), is shown to be similar to that of native contryphan-R (Pallaghy et al., Biochemistry, 1999, Vol. 38, pp. 13553-13559), confirming that the scaffold is robust with respect to the multiple substitutions. In particular, the α- β bond vectors characterising the orientation of the side chains relative to the backbone are similar in contryphan-R, YNK-contryphan-R, and ω-conotoxin GVIA, which is the required result for a scaffold-based approach to molecular design. The solution structure of YNK-contryphan-R has an N-terminal, nonhydrogen-bonded, chain reversal centered on Hyp3-D-Trp4, and a C-terminal type I β-turn. A minor form due to cis-trans isomerism of the Hyp2-Cys3 peptide bond is present in YNK-contryphan-R in a larger proportion than in contryphan-R. It is evident, particularly from the 3J(HαHN) coupling constants, that YNK-contryphan-R is more flexible than contryphan-R, probably due to the absence in YNK-contryphan-R of the Pro-Trp packing present in the native molecule. Nevertheless, the structure confirms that cyclic peptide molecular designs can achieve the intended conformations. (C) 2000 John Wiley and Sons, Inc.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173-179
Number of pages7
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • ω-conotoxin GVIA
  • Cyclic peptide
  • Mimic
  • N-type calcium channel
  • Nmr
  • Structure

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