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J Mol Graph Model. 2015 Nov;62:118-127. doi: 10.1016/j.jmgm.2015.09.013. Epub 2015 Sep 16.

PrinCCes: Continuity-based geometric decomposition and systematic visualization of the void repertoire of proteins.

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Department of Physiology, Semmelweis University, P.O. Box 259, H-1444 Budapest, Hungary. Electronic address:


Grooves and pockets on the surface, channels through the protein, the chambers or cavities, and the tunnels connecting the internal points to each other or to the external fluid environment are fundamental determinants of a wide range of biological functions. PrinCCes (Protein internal Channel & Cavity estimation) is a computer program supporting the visualization of voids. It includes a novel algorithm for the decomposition of the entire void volume of the protein or protein complex to individual entities. The decomposition is based on continuity. An individual void is defined by uninterrupted extension in space: a spherical probe can freely move between any two internal locations of a continuous void. Continuous voids are detected irrespective of their topological complexity, they may contain any number of holes and bifurcations. The voids of a protein can be visualized one by one or in combinations as triangulated surfaces. The output is automatically exported to free VMD (Visual Molecular Dynamics) or Chimera software, allowing the 3D rotation of the surfaces and the production of publication quality images. PrinCCes with graphic user interface and command line versions are available for MS Windows and Linux. The source code and executable can be downloaded at any of the following links:


Crevice; Geometry; Groove; Pore; Tunnel; Visualization

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