Understanding the relationship among
structure, function and thermodynamics of proteins is one of the important
goals in protein research. Although databases for structural and functional
information of proteins have been available, there was no on-line accessible
thermodynamic database. Thus, we decided to create an electronically
accessible database, ProTherm: Thermodynamic Database for Proteins and
Mutants, and opened it to public through the Internet in 1998. ProTherm
includes several thermodynamic data (unfolding Gibbs free energy change,
enthalpy change, heat capacity change, transition temperature, activity
etc.), structural information (secondary structure, accessibility etc.),
measuring methods, experimental conditions and literature information.
Since then, we have continued to collect experimental data (collecting
about 2,500 to 3,000 data per year), and improve the functionality of
the database and search/visualization interface (see the list in
). In order to make quality control and feedback the user's
opinion to improve the database, we have sent e-mails to the corresponding
authors of each paper included in ProTherm, asking them to check their
data and provide suggestions. We have a scientific advisory board to
hear advice regularly. We believe that ProTherm is becoming an important
resource for researchers studying protein structure, folding, stability
and engineering. The number of entries has reached 14,500 this year.
We will try to continue the data collection and the improvement of the
database. It is very laborious work to collect data from literature.
In the future, therefore, we would like to implement a system by which
we can collect experimental data directly from researchers. Please send
your opinion and suggestions to us, which will help us to improve the database.