December 1, 2006 (Vol. 26, No. 21)


Strong Points: Nice descriptions and implementation
Weak Points: Not much scientific relevance

If you’ve read this column for any period of time, you know that I like the offbeat. Consequently, I couldn’t resist this offering, which provides a musical introduction to protein structure. Yes, there are many sites like this one with similar ideas, but I’ll wager that none of them produce its interesting melodies. “A Protein Primer” accomplishes its magic by assigning increasing pitch to amino acids by their increasing hydrophobicity values and the duration of each note is set by the number of codons coding for it. I’m not a musician, but I’d find it hard to believe you wouldn’t appreciate the eerie beauty of the sequence of Calmodulin being played on your computer. My only complaint is that I’d like to be able to dump my own sequence into the site and have it play it back to me. Perhaps this will come in the future.

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