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PDB50 the Game


Every biological molecule has a shape. Scientists perform specialized experiments to visualize and record these molecular shapes at the atomic level, providing insight into the functions of these molecules, their roles in life processes, and how drugs and vaccines can be developed to target diseases.

Since 1971, ~180,000 atomic structures of proteins and nucleic acids (DNA, RNA) have found their home at the Protein Data Bank (PDB), the single worldwide, open-access repository for 3D structures of biological macromolecules. Every day, students, educators, and scientists use PDB content and tools free of charge to explore, understand, and advance the fields of biology and biomedicine.

This game celebrates the 50th anniversary of the PDB by giving players the opportunity to explore the process of structure discovery.

Build your research team and use the tools of structural biology to make ground-breaking discoveries. Prepare samples and grow crystals. Use X-ray crystallography, electron microscopy, and NMR spectroscopy to collect the data necessary to complete a project and deposit a structure to the PDB. Then, move on to the next project...but keep an eye on the competition and try not to get scooped!

Created and designed by Brian Hudson.

Players have two options: