Foldit – help science by playing a game

Foldit is ridiculously addictive.

It is a protein-folding game/simulation, designed and produced collaboratively between the University of Washington’s Computer Science and Engineering and Biochemistry departments. There is a great introduction to the roles of proteins in metabolism and disease, as well as protein folding, on their about page.

Apart from the great software and in-game tutorials in protein structures, players at the highest level may be contributing to medicine! The University and associated labs are setting problems of protein folding for players to solve – each one an important molecule in its own right and some even the key to curing some diseases.

There is a great article about the game on RichardDawkins.net: ‘Computer game’s high score could earn the Nobel prize in medicine.’ There’s even a classic quote from co-developer Prof. David Baker:

“I imagine that there’s a 12-year-old in Indonesia who can see all this in their head.”

Too right. Let’s represent for Indonesia!

Here’s a quick clip of the game in action at a high level:

Download the game here and get playing!

About Stephen

Director of Learning & MYP Coordinator at Canadian Academy, Kobe, Japan. Formerly MYP HS Science & IBDP Bio teacher and missing it terribly. Twitterist (@sjtylr), dad and bloggerer.

Posted on November 17, 2008, in 04 Genetics, Chemistry of Life (Core & AHL), Free Resources, Simulations, YouTube and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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