Free energy of imatinib (un-)binding to Abl and to the T315I ‘gatekeeper’ mutant.
Free energy surfaces associated to the binding of imatinib to WT Abl (top panel) and the T315I Abl “gatekeeper” mutant (bottom panel). The deepest energy minima correspond to the crystallographic binding pose and are labeled A. On the way out, B and B’ correspond to an intermediate state (metastable in WT Abl) where imatinib is in between the DFG and the αC helix. States C and C’ correspond to the “external binding pose”. Interestingly in Abl T315I there are two exit channels and both have an higher barrier than in the WT. The contour lines are drawn every 2 kcal/mol.