Life isn't 2-D, so why should our encyclopedias be?

Aug 22, 2008

Biologists and biochemists are now able to access 3D images of biomacromolecules underlying biological functions and disease. Rather than relying on text to provide the understanding of biomacromolecule structures, a collaborative website called Proteopedia now provides a new resource by linking written information and three-dimensional structural information.

The wiki web resource, first described in BioMed Central's open access journal Genome Biology, displays protein structures and other biomacromolecules in interactive format. These interactive images are surrounded by descriptive text containing hyperlinks that change the appearance (such as view, representations, colors or labels) of the adjacent 3D structure to reflect the concept explained in the text. This makes the complex structural information readily accessible and comprehensible, even to people who are not structural biologists.

The resource was developed at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel by Jaime Prilusky, Eran Hodis, and Joel L. Sussman, together with colleagues at the Weizmann Institute and in the USA. According to Sussman, "Using Proteopedia, anyone can easily create descriptions of biomacromolecules linked to their 3D structure."

Aside from content added by Proteopedia's existing users, pages on each of the more than 50,000 entries in the Protein Data Bank have been automatically created with 'seed' information, creating pages that are already useful and primed for expansion by users. Members of the scientific community are invited to request a user account to edit existing pages and to create new ones.

Hodis says, "We are presenting Proteopedia to the scientific community to judge its usefulness and merit, and we truly hope that it will offer an effective and appealing way to convey the link between 3D structure and function."

Source: BioMed Central

Explore further: 'Map spam' puts Google in awkward place

Related Stories

Understanding 'secret' urban languages

Apr 23, 2015

Research into a 'playful' and increasingly popular urban language that grew out of the necessity for criminals to hide their true intent could help organisations in Uganda communicate better with the country's ...

The brave new world of big data retention

Apr 01, 2015

With the Senate passing the Federal Government's data retention bill last week, there has been a great deal of discussion of "metadata", what it is and whether the government ought to have access to it. ...

Cebit 2015: DIY printing custom touch-sensitive displays

Mar 05, 2015

Computer scientists from Saarbrücken have developed a technique that could enable virtually anyone to print out customized displays of their own in future—in all shapes and sizes and onto various materials. ...

Recommended for you

'Map spam' puts Google in awkward place

17 hours ago

Google was re-evaluating its user-edited online map system Friday after the latest embarrassing incident—an image of an Android mascot urinating on an Apple logo.

Google search mobile switch a revolution for some

Apr 24, 2015

Google's latest Internet revolution this week saw the web giant modify its search algorithm to favour mobile-friendly sites, in a bid to upstage Apple that US media branded a "mobilegeddon".

Cheap content, growing reach make Snapchat a fast-rising star

Apr 22, 2015

Thousands of revelers descended on the Coachella music festival this month to rock out to their favorite bands and party day and night. But a far bigger audience from around the world - at least 40 million - joined in remotely ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Zero
5 / 5 (2) Aug 22, 2008
Awesome! Can't wait 'till they expand it to other areas of science. A wonderful tool for those of us who are visual people.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.