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Curr Opin Struct Biol. 2018 Feb;48:124-132. doi: 10.1016/j.sbi.2017.11.009. Epub 2018 Jan 3.

Are natural proteins special? Can we do that?

Author information

1
Departments of Chemistry and Molecular Biology, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08540, USA. Electronic address: hecht@princeton.edu.
2
Departments of Chemistry and Molecular Biology, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08540, USA.

Abstract

Natural proteins represent a minuscule fraction of possible sequence space. These very rare sequences display remarkable properties: They fold into many different stable structures, and perform a wide range of complex biological functions. These two considerations-rarity and functionality-may suggest that natural proteins are somehow special. Is this true? We address this question by exploring attempts to recapitulate the special structures and functions of natural proteins into sequences designed de novo.

PMID:
29306103
DOI:
10.1016/j.sbi.2017.11.009

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