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Proteins, the hidden complexity of the molecules of life


About This Course

This course addresses the intricacies of proteins from a computational chemistry perspective, emphasizing key aspects for predicting protein properties and structures. Using simple language, students will be introduced to the fascinating field of protein chemistry that goes beyond the usual understanding of proteins as mere nutrients or muscle-building products. Proteins, with their intricate shapes, perform a variety of vital cellular functions. When proteins misfold, they can become dysfunctional or aggregate deleteriously, leading to disease. Therefore, this course focuses on the folding of proteins and provides insight into the chemical processes that determine their final, biologically active form.

Intended learning outcomes

  1. Understanding and describing protein structures: At the end of this module, students will be able to explain the basic units of proteins and distinguish between different levels of protein structures.
  2. Understanding the process of protein folding: Upon completion of the course, students will be able to qualitatively describe the protein folding process and understand its importance and impact on biological systems.
  3. Efficient use of protein structure databases: At the end of the course, students will have acquired the ability to navigate, extract and visually represent protein structures using available structure databases.


No special requrements needed

Course Staff

Course Staff Image #1

Assoc. Prof. Andrea Lombardi

An esteemed educator in Theoretical Chemistry and Computational Modeling, he teaches at the Dipartimento di Chimica Biologia e Biotecnologie. From 2020-2024, she taught the "Computational Chemistry" course (LM27, Perugia) and the "Environmental Chemistry Part 1" unit in the Natural and Environmental Sciences program (LM48). Her expertise bridges both general and specialized curricula in molecular dynamics.