MIT Scientist Makes Music From The Coronavirus Spike Proteins : Short Wave When Markus Buehler heard about the coronavirus, he wanted to know what it sounded like. Today on the show, Maddie speaks with Short Wave reporter Emily Kwong about how Markus Buehler, a composer and engineering professor at MIT, developed a method for making music out of proteins, and how music can potentially help us hear what we have trouble seeing at the nanoscale level.
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Making Music Out Of The Coronavirus

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Making Music Out Of The Coronavirus

Making Music Out Of The Coronavirus

Making Music Out Of The Coronavirus

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Digital generated image of macro view of the corona virus from the 2020. Andriy Onufriyenko/Getty Images hide caption

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Andriy Onufriyenko/Getty Images

Digital generated image of macro view of the corona virus from the 2020.

Andriy Onufriyenko/Getty Images

Years ago, Markus Buehler developed a method to model proteins through music. So, when he heard about the spike proteins on the novel coronavirus, he wondered: what does it sound like?

Today on the show, Maddie Sofia talks to Short Wave reporter Emily Kwong about how Markus Buehler, a composer and professor of engineering at MIT, developed a way to make music out of protein structure and how music can potentially help us hear what we have trouble seeing at the nanoscale level.

Listen to the "protein sonifications" and other music created by Markus Buehler, featured in the episode:

Close to Nature

Concert of Silk and Amyloid

Concert of Enzyme Lysozyme

Viral Counterpoint of the Coronavirus Spike Protein (2019-nCoV)

And here is a dance performance from Poland, choreographed to Buehler's coronavirus spike protein composition.

Follow Maddie Sofia on Twitter at @maddie_sofia and Emily Kwong at @emilykwong1234. And email the show at shortwave.npr.org.

This episode was produced by Yowei Shaw, edited by Viet Le, and fact-checked by Emily Vaughn and Kimberly McCoy.