Structure-based screening for discovery of sweet compounds

Yaron Ben Shoshan-Galeczki, Masha Y. Niv*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Sweet taste is a cue for calorie-rich food and is innately attractive to animals, including humans. In the context of modern diets, attraction to sweetness presents a significant challenge to human health. Most known sugars and sweeteners bind to the Venus Fly Trap domain of T1R2 subunit of the sweet taste heterodimer. Because the sweet taste receptor structure has not been experimentally solved yet, a possible approach to finding sweet molecules is virtual screening using compatibility of candidate molecules to homology models of sugar-binding site. Here, the constructed structural models, docking and scoring schemes were validated by their ability to rank known sweet-tasting compounds higher than properties-matched random molecules. The best performing models were next used in virtual screening, retrieving recently patented sweeteners and providing novel predictions.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number126286
JournalFood Chemistry
StatePublished - 15 Jun 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier Ltd


  • Docking
  • Drug discovery
  • GPCR
  • Modeling
  • Sweet taste receptor
  • Sweeteners
  • T1R2
  • Tas1R2


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