Models and simulations of ion channels and related membrane proteins.
The past year has seen major advances in our understanding of ion channels, resulting from molecular dynamics simulations and modelling studies. Simulations of gramicidin have revealed that proton conduction along a water wire is limited by the dynamics of water reorientation. Plausible models are now available for a number of other channels, including alamethicin, the influenza A virus M2 protein, and the pore domains of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and Kv channels. Molecular dynamics simulations and continuum calculations have revealed some of the subtleties of the interactions between transmembrane helices and their lipid bilayer environment.