Design of a novel globular protein fold with atomic-level accuracy.
A major challenge of computational protein design is the creation of novel proteins with arbitrarily chosen three-dimensional structures. Here, we used a general computational strategy that iterates between sequence design and structure prediction to design a 93-residue alpha/beta protein called Top7 with a novel sequence and topology. Top7 was found experimentally to be folded and extremely stable, and the x-ray crystal structure of Top7 is similar (root mean square deviation equals 1.2 angstroms) to the design model. The ability to design a new protein fold makes possible the exploration of the large regions of the protein universe not yet observed in nature.