In the News: Protein Folding

Ilyana Sawka/ December 2, 2020

On November 30th, DeepMind’s AlphaFold announced that it can accurately predict the structure of proteins to within the width of an atom. Need a refresher on the science of proteins and the process of protein folding? LabXchange can help you understand this major breakthrough. Here are a few recommendations to get started.

A diagram of the 4 types of protein structure
Protein Folding

In order for proteins to function properly, they must be properly folded. In this scrollable interactive, the four levels of protein folding are explored in detail by exploring the structure of hemoglobin.

A photograph of Rachelle Gaudet
Kinetics of Protein Folding

This video from HarvardX features Dr. Rachelle Gaudet of Harvard University, describing the energetics of protein folding and explaining how proteins follow the correct path of folding through cooperativity.

A graphic depicting how proteins fold
Protein Folding Simulation

Explore the role of hydrophobic and hydrophilic interactions as proteins fold with this content from the Concord Consortium. Also generate a random peptide string and watch how it folds in an aqueous environment.

A photo of David Baker presenting about protein design
Introduction to Protein Design
In Part 1 of this talk for iBiology, the University of Washington’s Dr. David Baker describes two reciprocal research problems. Firstly, how to predict the 3-dimensional structure of a protein from a specific amino acid sequence. And secondly, how to determine the amino acid sequence that will generate a new protein designed to have a specific structure.

A photo of David Baker presenting about the design of new protein functions
Design of New Protein Functions

In Part 2 of his iBiology talk, David Baker tells us how his lab moved beyond designing new protein structures to designing new protein functions.

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