Saturday, February 4, 2023

Innovative AI Protein Design Outperforms Nature

11:20 PM | , ,

AI generate functional protein

As an avid science enthusiast and the director of, I am thrilled to discuss ProGen, a cutting-edge AI in protein engineering developed by Salesforce AI Research. This groundbreaking technology surpasses nature's own intricate designs, showcasing the revolutionary capabilities of ProGen in the realm of biotechnology.

AI-Powered Protein Design: A New Era in Biotech

ProGen: An AI Leap in Protein Synthesis

In the realm of biotechnological innovation, Salesforce AI Research has introduced ProGen, a transformative AI proteins model. ProGen, functioning as a protein language model, applies token prediction to craft artificial proteins with remarkable proficiency, akin to constructing a protein sentence in nature's complex language.

Outperforming Nature's Proteins

Laboratory tests reveal that some of these artificial proteins created by ProGen match the efficacy of natural proteins. The fact that they achieve this despite having amino acid sequences significantly different from any found in nature highlights the AI's prowess in decoding biological principles.

The ProGen Methodology: How It Transforms Protein Engineering

From Concept to Creation

The process to create proteins with ProGen begins by inputting a control tag, such as 'lysozyme,' into the AI model. From this, ProGen constructs novel amino acid sequences, resulting in artificial proteins with vast potential applications, from medical therapeutics to environmental solutions.

The Data-Driven Foundation

To construct this innovative model, ProGen was fed a protein database of 280 million protein sequences, allowing the Salesforce AI Research's progeny to 'learn' over several weeks. The model was further refined with 56,000 sequences from different lysozyme families, providing it with a rich context of protein information.

Rapid Generation and Selection

ProGen's efficiency in generating protein sequences is striking—it swiftly produced a million protein variants. The research team then meticulously selected 100 candidates for testing, with a preference for those most resembling natural protein sequences.

The Future of Protein Engineering

The implications of ProGen's success are profound. Experts suggest that this generative AI technology might outstrip directed evolution—a Nobel Prize-winning protein design technique—in power and utility. By accelerating the creation of new proteins, ProGen promises to revitalize the protein engineering field, which is over 50 years old, opening doors to numerous applications that could benefit society in unprecedented ways.

Written for you by, this exploration of AI's role in the scientific advancement of protein design highlights a future where biotechnology and biology converge, leading to innovations that once seemed beyond our grasp. As we continue to monitor these advancements, we remain committed to sharing the most reliable and up-to-date scientific concepts in a clear and engaging manner, connecting millions of curious minds worldwide.

Ref source: Nature Biotechnology (

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