Protein Folding: A Problem in Global Optimization

Tuesday, April 12, 2005 - 11:15am - 12:15pm
EE/CS 3-180
Ken Dill (University of San Francisco)
Joint work with Banu Ozkan, John Chodera, and Thomas Weikl.

To compute the folded structure of a protein using a physical model and the monomer sequence has been regarded as a challenge because it involves multiple time and space scales. Our approach has been to understand how proteins physically fold and to try to apply that strategy to protein structure prediction. We believe that proteins break their large global optimization problem into smaller local optimizations. We have been exploring various methods for exploiting that idea for protein structure prediction.