Students explore the shape and chemical properties of the 20 amino acid sidechains with engaging plastic models. The sidechains feature dual coloring schemes – color on the plastic clip indicates chemical properties, while the individual atoms of the sidechains are colored by atom type. Since understanding protein structure begins with this unique combination of shape and chemical properties of the amino acid sidechains, students will gain a basic knowledge of the laws that determine protein folding.
Protein folding is influenced by several factors, one of which is the chemical properties of the amino acid sidechains. Through this exercise, students will explore the chemical properties that dictate the way a protein will fold. A flexible, foam-covered wire represents the backbone of the peptide to which the plastic sidechains are attached.
Teaching Points and Inventory
Amino Acid Starter Kit Introduction
Amino Acid Side Chain Chart
Amino Acid Starter Kit Standard Genetic Code
Amino Acid Starter Kit Student Handout 1 and Key
Amino Acid Starter Kit Student Handout 2 and Key
Amino Acid Starter Kit Student Handout 3 and Key
Amino Acid Starter Kit Teacher Notes
Instructional materials for classroom use are available for printing through the 3D Molecular Designs Website.
Models must be returned on or before the due date. Borrowers are responsible for return shipping costs.
Ship models to:
Milwaukee School of Engineering
1000 N. Market Street
Milwaukee, WI 53202-3113
Please insure the models for the amount indicated in each suitcase. Any damage incurred in return shipping due to improper packing will be charged to the borrower. We recommend using FedEx or UPS with "two-day ground" transportation. Make sure to get a tracking number for the shipment.