News & CommentX-ray Crystallography

Taking a Structured Approach to Understanding Proteins

Science  13 Feb 1998:
Vol. 279, Issue 5353, pp. 978-979
DOI: 10.1126/science.279.5353.978

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Summary

Knowing the structures of all the proteins encoded by the flood of gene sequences pouring into the public databases would give a big boost to biomedical researchers seeking to understand those genes' functions, but even if it were possible to determine all of them, it would take a tremendous amount of time and resources. Meeting 24 and 25 January at Argonne National Laboratory outside Chicago, a group of researchers agreed that the goal should be to determine the structures of a set of molecules representing all types of protein structure. They say this would yield almost as good a picture of the universe of proteins as attempting to get the three-dimensional structure of every one that turns up through gene sequencing, which in the case of the human genome could be 100,000.

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