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ARTS FIRST Performance Fair

Event Dates

Saturday, April 30, 2022 3pm to 3:20pm

45 Quincy Street, Cambridge, MA 02138

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Original chamber works & MIT Professor Markus Buehler's AI-generated musical interpretation of COVID-19 antibodies.

Lindenbaum Festival Ensemble:

Hyung Joon Won, cond
Grant Riew, vc
Patrick Sanguinity, tb
Rachel Chau, pt
Michael Park, tenor
Daniel Yoo, vn
Emily Hong, soprano
Benjamin Tae, bass
Yeseo Shim, vn

Composer Markus Buehler's Process for Creating Music from Protein Structures:

Architected biomaterials, as well as sound and music, are constructed from small building blocks that are assembled across time- and length-scales. We report a novel deep learning-enabled integrated algorithmic workflow to merge the two concepts for radical discovery of de novo protein materials, exploiting musical creativity as the foundation, and extrapolating through a recursive method to increase protein complexity by successively injecting protein chemistry into the process. Indeed, music is one of the few universal expressions that can create bridges between cultures, find associations between seemingly unrelated concepts, and can be used as a novel way to generate bio-inspired designs that derive functions from the imaginations of the creative mind.

Our earlier work (ACS Nano, 2019) has offered a pathway to convert proteins into sound, and sound into proteins. In this new work we build on this paradigm and translate a piece of classical music into matter. Based on Bach's Goldberg variations, we offer a series of case studies to convert the musical data imagined by the composer into protein design, and folded into a 3D structure using deep learning. The quest we seek to address is to identify semblances, or memories, or information content in such musical creation, that offers new insights into pattern relationships between distinct manifestations of information. Using basic local alignment search tool analysis, we find that several fragments of the new proteins display similarities to existing protein sequences found in proteobacteria among other organisms, especially in regions of low complexity and repetitive motifs.

The resulting protein forms the basis for iterative musical composition, and an evolutionary paradigm that defines a variational pathway for melodic development, complementing conventional creative or mathematical methods. 

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