Molecule of the Month
November 2020

Adenylyl Cyclase

Adenylyl cyclase creates second messengers to amplify signals from G-protein coupled receptors


3D View:  6r3q




Health Focus: Drugs and the Brain

The brain orchestrates everything we do, sending signals through the nervous system to control different parts of our body. The brain is also the home of our thoughts and consciousness, as neurons process the input from our senses and store what they find as memories. Many drugs are available to help tune the function of the brain and nervous system when there are problems. Unfortunately, the effects of some drugs are hard to control and can lead to abuse and addiction. Explore PDB-101 Resources to learn about proteins related to our nervous system and mental health.

2021 Video Challenge for High School Students

Molecular Mechanisms of Drugs for Mental Disorders

RCSB PDB invites all high school students to tell a two-minute story that combines structural Biology and Medicine. Videos can be submited between January 12 and April 27, 2021.

Quick Links

The Challenge | Learn | Participate

2021 Video Challenge key visual: synaptic region with one fused vesicle
Learn: Materials for Exploration
PDB-101 resources and 3D structures of COVID-19 proteins.
Teach: Curricula
The RCSB PDB Curricula provide authentic, hands-on teaching materials, individual and group activities and assessment suggestions.
Education Corner: Using PDB Resources
Using PDB Structures to Visualize Science by medical illustrator Veronica Falconieri Hays (Falconeri Visuals).
SciArt Galleries
Irving Geis (1908-1997) was a gifted artist who helped illuminate the field of structural biology with his iconic images. The Geis Digital Archive features many of his illustrations in the context of their molecular structures.

Images used with permission from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute ( All rights reserved.

Ribonuclease S


Cytochrome c

Lac Repressor

Induced Lac Repressor


Hemoglobin (1000)



Tomato Bushy Stunt Virus (TBSV)



Aspartate Transcarbamoylase (ATCase)

Carboxypeptidase A

Transfer Ribonucleic Acid (tRNA)



Cytochrome c (unbound)

Lysozyme (512)


Myoglobin Fold


Lysozyme (488)

Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA)

Hemoglobin S

DPG-Hemoglobin Complex


Intermolecular Contacts in Hemoglobin S


TATA-Binding Protein (TBP)

Immunoglobulin G (IgG)

The Molecular Landscapes by David S. Goodsell integrate information from structural biology, microscopy and biophysics to simulate detailed views of the molecular structure of living cells.

Illustrations are free for use under a CC-BY-4.0 license

Respiratory Droplet

Zika Virus

HIV in Blood Plasma

Escherichia coli

Biosites: Red Blood Cell

Biosites: Nucleus


SARS-CoV-2 and Neutralizing Antibodies

Biosites: Muscle

Coronavirus Life Cycle

SARS-CoV-2 Fusion

Mycoplasma mycoides


Influenza Vaccine

Biosites: Basement Membrane

Immunological Synapse

Biosites: Cytoplasm

Measles Virus Proteins



Ebola Virus

Biosites: Blood Plasma

Poliovirus Neutralization

Lipid Droplets

Insulin Action

Excitatory and Inhibitory Synapses