Explore a Structural View of Biology at PDB-101


Biological Energy category.
(Click image to enlarge)
Biological Energy category.

PDB-101's Structural View of Biology promotes a top-down exploration of the PDB.

To start, select from high-level categories describing function: Protein Synthesis, Enzymes, Health and Disease, Biological Energy, Infrastructure and Communication, Biotechnology and Nanotechnology.  

The Biological Energy category, for example, involves PDB structures that reveal how cells use chemical energy, light energy, electrical energy and mechanical energy to power the processes of life. The structures are organzied into the following subcategories:

  • Capturing the Energy in Food
  • Photosynthesis
  • Molecular Motors
  • Creating and Capturing Light

These subcategories link to Molecule of the Month features related to the topic.  Capturing the Energy in Food includes articles about structures such as pepsin (an enzyme that digests proteins), lactate dehydrogenase (creates lactic acid as part of anaerobic respiration), and glycolytic enzymes (used to break down glucose).

Each article then links to special PDB-101 Structure Focus pages that highlight specific entries discussed in the article. These pages describe why the particular structure has been selected as an example, along with an interactive 3D view, sequence display, ligand information, and links to other structures examples discussed in the Molecule of the Month article. For example, the feature on glycolytic enzymes links to Structure Focus pages for all enzymes involved in glycolysis. These Focus pages are streamlined versions of the more complex Structure Summary pages available for all PDB entries.

The Structural View of Biology is a major part of PDB-101, the RCSB PDB resource that packages together materials and tools that promote exploration in the world of proteins and nucleic acids for teachers, students, and the general public. Click on the blackboard logo from the top of any RCSB PDB page to enter.

Other areas in PDB-101 include indexes of all Molecule of the Month articles; Educational Resources, with related tools, posters, tutorials, activities, lesson plans, and more; and the Understanding PDB Data reference for exploring and interpreting PDB data.

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