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#CrowdCloudLIVE After each episode's WORLD premiere in April, show host, producer, and people seen on the show participated in post-premiere roundtable discussions. Viewers like you listened in, asked questions, and were able to dive deeper into the power of Citizen Science.
Watch the recorded Facebook Live events now. Discover more about how Citizen Science is revolutionizing the ways we gather, analyze, and utilize the data that fuels scientific research, discovery, and community action.
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Solve puzzles to predict new protein structures to advance medical research.
Proteins are essential to every cell of every living thing, and are made up of amino acids that fold into very specific shapes, the same way every time. The shape of a protein determines its function, which makes it very important. FoldIt is a puzzle-solving game that aims to predict how protein structures will be shaped, which is very important in medical research. There are so many ways protein can fold that researchers need citizen science gamers to help figure out which is the best way for certain pharmaceutical drugs or disease treatments. Players can even design new proteins which could potentially treat or cure illnesses. It turns out that humans’ pattern recognition and puzzle solving abilities are more efficient than computer programs at pattern-folding tasks. It’s fun, addictive, and way more proactive than scrolling Facebook.
FoldIt has already been very successful in advancing science, which you can read about in several peer-reviewed journal publications. For example, in 2012, FoldIt’s gamers helped decipher the structure of Mason-Pfizer monkey virus (M-PMV) retroviral protease, a monkey virus which causes HIV/AID in people. This problem that had gone unsolved for 15 years, took citizen science gamers only 10 days.