Protein molecules as computational elements in living cells

Nature. 1995 Jul 27;376(6538):307-12. doi: 10.1038/376307a0.


Many proteins in living cells appear to have as their primary function the transfer and processing of information, rather than the chemical transformation of metabolic intermediates or the building of cellular structures. Such proteins are functionally linked through allosteric or other mechanisms into biochemical 'circuits' that perform a variety of simple computational tasks including amplification, integration and information storage.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Physiological Phenomena
  • Neural Networks, Computer
  • Proteins / physiology*
  • Signal Transduction*


  • Proteins