CASP, which stands for Critical Assessment of Techniques for Protein Structure Prediction, is a community-wide, worldwide experiment for protein structure prediction taking place every two years since 1994. CASP provides research groups with an opportunity to objectively test their structure prediction methods and delivers an independent assessment of the state of the art in protein structure modeling to the research community and software users.
Even though the primary goal of CASP is to help advance the methods of identifying protein three-dimensional structure from its amino acid sequence, many view the experiment more as a “world championship” in this field of science. More than 100 research groups from all over the world participate in CASP on a regular basis and it is not uncommon for the entire groups to suspend their other research for months while they focus on getting their servers ready for the experiment and on performing the detailed predictions. (Information taken from the CASP page on Wikipedia: please see that page for more information on the selection and evaluation of target proteins.)
In this contest-style teams are divided into two groups, those with human intervention, and those that are completely automated. FoldIt entries will be entered as the "human" type. These puzzles are completely blind, in that the structure of the proteins in question have never been published.
CASP Roll Information
CASP Roll web page: http://predictioncenter.org/casprol/index.cgi
- First prediction targets will be released not earlier than December 1, 2011
- Second target is expected December 2, 2011
- Further targets are expected in the following week
- New targets will be posted as they come in.
The rolling experiment will run all year round.
During the regular CASP10 prediction season (May-August, 2012) the targets that are estimated to be in the appropriate difficulty category will be posted to both experiments.
CASP10 web page: http://predictioncenter.org/casp10/index.cgi
- The first prediction targets are released
- the last prediction targets will be released not later than July 17, 2012
- prediction season will end not later than July 31, 2012
- Refinement experiment will end not later than August 17, 2012
- Abstracts describing the methods tested in CASP10 will be collected in September 2012
- Program of the meeting will be available in November, 2012
- In November 2012, groups with the most accurate predictions and interesting methods will receive invitations to give talks.
- The meeting will take place on December 9-12, 2012
see table of all puzzles
see some results of Foldit players
Group performance on all models #101 Foldit, #124 AD, #127 Contenders, #140 VC
Group performance on first model #116 Foldit, #120 VC, #123 AD, #126 Contenders
In early August of 2009, the foldit developers decided to give the players starting models outputted from Rosetta@home, by obtaining sequences for proteins that were currently unsolved, but would be released to the Protein Data Bank soon after. Since no one knew which structure predictions would be correct, they tried to give the players as diverse a set as possible.
The intent was practice for everyone for the upcoming CASP9, and to help the developers figure out what the best Rosetta models would be to use as starting points for Foldit. (taken from Dr. Baker's Mini CASP announcement http://fold.it/portal/node/986632)
Information from CASP 9 is on its own page.
Foldit was represented for the first time at the eighth competition (CASP8) which took place during 2008, but in that competition FoldIt results were part of the BakerLab CASP team. In preparation the players had folded old CASP7 proteins and compared the results from the developers with the published structures.
The first open beta of FoldIt was released a few days after the start of CASP8. The players and developers then spent a month training and developing the program further before trying their hand at their first CASP8 puzzle. As a result, they were only involved in relatively few competition targets. Despite these handicaps the FoldIt team did well with some top places and even a victory! Overall, the Foldit players were as good as the experts with all their tools and better than any automated machine submissions.
Building the Scientific - bild der wissenschaft edition: 4 / 2010, page 18 - Perfectly shaped - Article on Protein Structure Prediction and CASP