Insights

An Artificial Intelligence Predicted the Shape of Nearly Every Known Protein

For more crisp and insightful business and economic news, subscribe to
The Daily Upside newsletter.
It’s completely free and we guarantee you’ll learn something new every day.

Everyone knows the sci-fi movie cliche of an artificial intelligence program inevitably slipping down a villainous path. Thankfully, when it’s not scripted by a Hollywood screenwriter, a super smart AI isn’t all bad.

On Thursday, Alphabet-owned, UK-based AI firm DeepMind revealed that its AlphaFold algorithm has effectively predicted the shape of nearly every protein known to science, which could rapidly accelerate drug discovery and breakthroughs in biology. They’re giving away the database to anyone for free.

The 0.01%

The human mind is incredible, or at least Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein’s were. But with all the tools available to our species’ best and brightest researchers, figuring out the shape of one protein can take months or years of laboratory study. In fact, humans have only figured out the shape of about 0.01%, or 190,000, of known proteins.

Cracking the shape of proteins, which are essential for life, is critical to understanding a protein’s function, and understanding the inner workings gives scientists the potential to alter its DNA sequence or identify drugs that could attach to it. In the case of malaria, for example, studying the proteins of the parasite can reveal how antibodies bind to it and open pathways to fighting it. By performing work that could have taken humans decades, DeepMind’s AI gives scientists a roadmap for a new world of discovery:

Last year, DeepMind said AlphaFold predicted the shape of all human proteins, about 350,000, which is crucial to understanding human health and diseases. That database now features over 200 million predicted protein structures, touching on nearly every living organism whose genomes scientists have sequenced.The structures are available on a public database maintained by the European Bioinformatics Institute at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL-EBI). Over half a million researchers have already used the database to view 2 million structures.

“Almost every drug that has come to market over the past few years has been in part designed through knowledge of protein structures,” Janet Thornton, a senior scientist at EMBL-EBI, told the Financial Times.

Manpower: Human scientists aren’t out of a job, they still have to confirm the protein structures in experiments, but have been essentially handed years of work. Plus they can apply for a job at Isomorphic Labs, the UK company that Alphabet smartly set up to use DeepMind’s technology to accelerate drug discovery.

Trade The World Anywhere & Anytime!

Mobile app platform with over 50,000 global listed securities across 12 markets (over 70% global market capitalisation), right from your Android or iOS device.

Integrated with exclusive trading idea and investment analysis tools to help you find actionable insight on virtually every financial instrument across our 12 global markets, to help you optimise your trading strategies.

Refer Your Friends

Tell your friends about Monex and gift them FREE access to our trading tools.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

We respect your privacy and will only send this one email notification to your friends. 

Share With Your Friends

Rebate Rewards

Level 2 Rebate

Deposit $2,000 and get $200 Rebate
$ 200 Rebate
  • 3 Simple Steps
  • 1. Register Using The Link Below (Promo-Code: WEBREBATE)
  • 2. Deposit $2,000 and place one trade at any non-Austalian market within 30 calendar days
  • 3. Receive Your $200 Rebate
Popular

Level 1 Rebate

Deposit $1,000 and get $100 Rebate
$ 100 Rebate
  • 3 Simple Steps
  • 1. Register Using The Link Below (Promo-Code: WEBREBATE)
  • 2. Deposit $1,000 and place one trade at any non-Austalian market within 30 calendar days
  • 3. Receive Your $100 Rebate

Monex Trading Tools Access and Usage Terms

The Monex Trading Tools (referred to as ‘tools’ hereafter) are available to you inside your client portal;

To activate access to the tools, you must have a verified and approved trading account and have made a deposit of at least AUD $1000.

An active and funded account with a positive trading balance is required to continue to have access to the tools;

Although the tools are available to you, Monex Securities may at it’s discretion disable access to the tools in the future;

Monex Securities reserves the right to change these terms and conditions from time to time, as it sees fit, without notice.

EASY QUALIFICATION & LOW ENTRY
NEW CLIENT REBATE OFFER
EARN UP TO $200 CASH REBATE
Act Fast - Promotion Ends In
Click Here To Get Started
EASY QUALIFICATION & LOW ENTRY
NEW CLIENT REBATE OFFER
EARN UP TO $200 CASH REBATE
Act Fast - Promotion Ends In
Click Here For More Info