|20 Feb 2013|
Duncan Penfold-Brown, a Research Associate with the Human Proteome Folding project, gives a tour and demonstration of two web interfaces that organize the results of the Human Proteome Folding calculations and make those results accessible to researchers and the public.
Over the past few years, World Community Grid volunteers have run millions of calculations that have revealed the structures of hundreds of thousands of proteins. Many of these proteins, thanks to the Human Proteome Folding project, now have predicted structures. A protein’s shape is what determines its function, so protein structure and protein function are very closely linked. Though these proteins have yet to be studied in detail, as researchers learn more about their structure and function, they make that information available to other scientists by adding that data to the project's database.
The Human Proteome Folding project database is therefore a huge repository of information that could be useful to other scientists who are studying processes that involve proteins – in other words, any life process or disease process. With such a broad audience and such a large dataset, the challenge is to present the information in a usable way.
The two web interfaces explained in Duncan Penfold-Brown’s lecture are designed to help. In this video, Duncan explains the functionality of the Yeast Resource Center and the Proteome Folding Project - YRC BLAST Interface. Researchers who are interested in unknown proteins can search these databases to find potential matches either by protein name, or by a description of the protein structure. If researchers working on a new protein find that it closely matches a protein already in the database, they have a huge head start in determining the role that protein plays in the process they are studying.