Touching proteins with virtual bare hands: how to visualize protein-drug complexes and their dynamics in virtual reality
The ability to precisely visualize the atomic geometry of the interactions between a drug and its protein target in structural models is critical in predicting the correct modifications in previously identified inhibitors to create more effective next generation drugs. Here we present a freely available software pipeline for visualising protein structures through virtual reality (VR) on regular customer hardware, such as the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift.
Dominic Branford and Animesh Datta, working in collaboration with Haixing Miao (University of Birmingham), have published a paper on the fundamental quantum limits of optomechanical sensors in Physical Review Letters (DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.121.110505). Being able to measure very weak forces is central to many applications, such as the direct detection of gravitational waves and monitoring subterranean movement of magma in volancially-active areas. The strength of a force can be inferred through its effect of displacing a mass: the displacement can be sensed by illuminating it with a laser and observing the reflected light, a case of optomechanical sensing. In this work, Dominic, Haixing and Animesh study the best precision attainable by optomechanical sensors when multi-coloured light is used.
Greig Cowan and Tim Gershon describe recent discoveries of new types of matter called tetraquarks and pentaquarks, and discuss the outlook for understanding these particles.
Quantum computers are capable of solving certain problems whose scale lies outside that of classical computers. For some of these problems not even the solution can be efficiently checked with a classical computer. While schemes can verify an arbitrary quantum computation with a limited set of quantum operations, the minimum quantum resources to perform such a verification is an open question. Samuele, Theodoros, and Animesh from the quantum information group have published a paper on verification in Physical Review A (DOI: https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevA.98.022323) demonstrating an improvement on the existing requirements for schemes to verify quantum computations. In this work the authors demonstrate a verification scheme which works with a further reduced number of such quantum operations.
Solar activity drives Earth’s space weather. Each solar cycle has a different intensity but we found cycle invariant properties constraining the chance of space storms which affect systems at Earth.
The ability to precisely visualize the atomic geometry of the interactions between a drug and its protein target in structural models is critical in predicting the correct modifications in previously identified inhibitors to create more effective next generation drugs. We have combined VR visualization with fast algorithms for simulating intramolecular motions of protein flexibility, in an effort to further improve structure-led drug design by exposing molecular interactions that might be hidden in the less informative static models.