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Contact: David Ruth
Rice University


Caption: A protein folding funnel, the product of algorithms created by Rice's Center for Theoretical Biological Physics, is a graphic representation of the energy landscape a protein navigates as it goes from its initial floppy state to a folded, functional unit. The funnel shows smooth slopes as well as outcroppings where parts of a protein may pause while others catch up, and also traps that could cause a protein to misfold. New Rice research shows how the interplay between evolution and physics developed the skills necessary to conserve useful proteins.

Credit: Center for Theoretical Biological Physics/Rice University

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