You are using an out of date browser. It may not display this or other websites correctly. You should upgrade or use an alternative browser.
In the field of molecular modeling, docking is a method which predicts the preferred orientation of one molecule to a second when a ligand and a target are bound to each other to form a stable complex. Knowledge of the preferred orientation in turn may be used to predict the strength of association or binding affinity between two molecules using, for example, scoring functions.
The associations between biologically relevant molecules such as proteins, peptides, nucleic acids, carbohydrates, and lipids play a central role in signal transduction. Furthermore, the relative orientation of the two interacting partners may affect the type of signal produced (e.g., agonism vs antagonism). Therefore, docking is useful for predicting both the strength and type of signal produced.
Molecular docking is one of the most frequently used methods in structure-based drug design, due to its ability to predict the binding-conformation of small molecule ligands to the appropriate target binding site. Characterisation of the binding behaviour plays an important role in rational design of drugs as well as to elucidate fundamental biochemical processes.