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Curr Opin Struct Biol. 1999 Apr;9(2):177-83.

New Monte Carlo algorithms for protein folding.

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  • 1Department of Physics Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI 49931-1295, USA.


Over the past three decades, a number of powerful simulation algorithms have been introduced to the protein folding problem. For many years, the emphasis has been placed on how to both overcome the multiple minima problem and find the conformation with the global minimum potential energy. Since the new view of the protein folding mechanism (based on the free energy landscape of the protein system) arose in the past few years, however, it is now of interest to obtain a global knowledge of the phase space, including the intermediate and denatured states of proteins. Monte Carlo methods have proved especially valuable for these purposes. As well as new, powerful optimization techniques, novel algorithms that can sample much a wider phase space than conventional methods have been established.

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