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Do you want to see a drawing of your favorite protein?

Dear friends and readers of my blog, as I am always looking for new inputs for my protein art, I decided to post a call for protein structures. Are you working on a certain structure or do you just have a certain protein in mind and you would like to see it as a funny drawing? Just ask me in the comments on this post or via e-mail: And I will try to fulfill your orders!

If you like the outcome, you will have the opportunity to buy (but don’t have to!) the original drawing or an art print.

Here is an example of a protein ordered by a reader of my blog. It’s the protein Runx1. I have produced two variants. In these drawings you see the protein from two different perspectives.

“The Tourist”

“The Hunter

Runx1 is a transcription factor. It means that this protein can bind and regulate certain regions of DNA. Runx1 plays a role in the production of blood cells. People with a defective variant of this protein can develop a certain type of leukemia.


Leave a Comment
  1. Ian Le Guillou / Oct 25 2012 10:06 pm

    Hi May, your artwork is incredible! After looking at plenty of protein structures, I never thought that they could look like anything more than a bundle of string!

    Actually I’m just about to write up my PhD thesis after I’ve been working on a couple of proteins in particular (2P0W and 3CFS). It would be amazing to see either of these turned into something a bit more fun!

    • May K. / Nov 2 2012 1:07 pm

      I was also very surprised to realize that I see more bundles;).
      Oh, I will definitely try to make something out of one of your proteins!

  2. El / Nov 29 2012 5:22 am

    Hi May! This is amazing, super creative! If you’re still taking requests, I’m working on phosphotriesterase (PTE) from pseudomonas diminuta and would love to have a cuter version of it to keep me going!

    Great blog!

    • May K. / Dec 14 2012 8:35 pm

      I’ll try my best!:) But it may take some time.

  3. ray / Jan 26 2015 4:49 am

    If you draw 1URN, I’ll buy it from you

  4. Nerea / Mar 3 2015 8:31 am

    I am fond of your work! I have used one of your drawings in my lectures in crystallography to explain theidea of structure/function! We work in Nuclear Receptors these are transcription factors that regulate the translational activation or repression of genes. We always discribe them to be like the greek god “atlas” as they carry many other proteins in their back. Anyway my boss has just recently been granted a Proffessorship title and i would really like to give her a special present… I would love to give her one of your drawings using one of the structures she solved!! (Pdb 2piu) Would this be possible?

    • May K. / Mar 3 2015 12:34 pm

      Dear Nerea,

      thank you very much for your interest in ‘Protein Art’!

      In principle it’s possible, and I would do my best to to draw a nice picture of the androgen receptor (2PIU). However, I still have some questions to you. Probably it would be best to discuss the details via e-mail, just write a short message to:

  5. Caley / Sep 9 2015 10:20 pm

    Not sure if this is still going, but I just started working in a lab with the small heat shock proteins Hsp27 (HspB1) and Alpha B Crystallin (HspB5) and would love to see either of them turned into art!

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