Build a super accurate, scaled 3D-model of a polypeptide chain that can be folded into all the basic protein structures, like α-helices, β-sheets, and β-turns. The model, called a Peppytide, is made by linking together many 3D-printed molecular subunits with a series of precisely placed magnets and screws. Once built, the Peppytide chain faithfully reproduces the size, shape and flexibility of proteins. When it is carefully folded into the protein helix and sheet structures, the model becomes locked in by all the magnets and becomes quite rigid. A great way to learn about protein folding and protein secondary structures!
The model consists of three repeating elements: an amide unit, an alpha carbon unit and a side chain methyl unit. There is a separate stl file provided for each of these parts. These parts require assembly and access to a drill press and basic tools is required. For more information on how to assemble these parts into the final model, please see the following article: http://makezine.com/projects/peppytides/
The research to develop this model was funded by the U.S. Dept. of Energy, Office of Science, Basic Energy Sciences division, and by the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency.