Elfin UI: a graphical interface for protein design with modular building blocks

Chun-Ting Yeh, Leon Obendorf, Fabio Parmeggiani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
158 Downloads (Pure)


Molecular models have enabled understanding of biological structures and functions and allowed design of novel macro-molecules. Graphical user interfaces (GUIs) in molecular modelling are generally focused on atomic representations, but, especially for proteins, do not usually address designs of complex and large architectures, from nanometers to microns.

Therefore, we have developed Elfin UI as a Blender add-on for the interactive design of large protein architectures with custom shapes. Elfin UI relies on compatible building blocks to design single- and multiple-chain protein structures. The software can be used: 1) as an interactive environment to explore building blocks combinations; and 2) as a computer aided design (CAD) tool to define target shapes that guide automated design.

Elfin UI allows users to rapidly build new protein shapes, without the need to focus on amino acid sequence, and aims to make design of proteins and protein-based materials intuitive and accessible to researchers and members of the general public with limited expertise in protein engineering.
Original languageEnglish
JournalFrontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology
Early online date23 Oct 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Oct 2020

Structured keywords

  • Bristol BioDesign Institute
  • BcompB


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