NEW BRUNSWICK/PISCATAWAY, N.J. – The Rutgers-based Protein Data Bank (PDB) has begun the year with a commitment of a record $30 million in federal support for the next five years. This computer library of molecular structures is one of the world's most critical resources for solving the mysteries of human disease.
The PDB is an Internet-accessible repository of 3-D models of nearly 24,000 proteins and other macromolecules in its growing inventory. Its facilities are located on the Busch campus.
"The new funding signals a recognition of the importance of the Protein Data Bank by the federal government," said PDB director Helen Berman, a Board of Governors Professor in Rutgers' department of chemistry and chemical biology. "It assures that the PDB can continue to help unlock the secrets of biological systems in 21st century medical and pharmaceutical research."
The structures archived in the PDB represent an increasingly large fraction of all the molecules of life – ones that will interact with new drugs being designed. These large molecular structures are determined by the most modern experimental methods, including X-ray crystallography and NMR spectroscopy.
For the past five years the National Science Foundation, National Institute of General Medical Sciences, Department of Energy and the National Library of Medicine have jointly supported the PDB. The funding group expanded this year to include the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.
The PDB is managed by three members of a consortium: the Research Collaboratory for Structural Bioinformatics: Rutgers, the San Diego Supercomputer Center at the University of California, San Diego; and the Center for Advanced Research in Biotechnology of the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
Source: Eurekalert & othersLast reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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