from a blog to a book

Discover 100 tales about proteins – these astonishing molecules that keep life going – told by a biologist and a writer, and help distribute copies to bookshops, libraries, teachers and their classes worldwide.

Proteins are among the most intriguing molecules and well worth getting acquainted with - which is why we would like to publish a stiff paperback of 100 of the best-loved articles from the popular Protein Spotlight science blog (in English).

  • Protein Spotlight…?

Almost 20 years on, Protein Spotlight is now a popular science blog which tells the tale of one protein, every month. Instigated in 2000 by Professor Amos Bairoch, founder of the renowned protein sequence databank Swiss-Prot, Vivienne Baillie Gerritsen has written over 200 articles, and Protein Spotlight has thousands of readers across the world: researchers, students, teachers, journalists and the odd amateur life scientist. See below what they are saying about the blog.

The blog is maintained by the Swiss-Prot group of the SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics:

  • THE NAKED PROTEIN, a book for you, friends and your students

Over the years, our readers have expressed their interest in a collection of the articles in book form for themselves, their students, or simply as a source to refer to. 2018 happens to be SIB’s 20th anniversary, and it seems the ideal occasion to publish a special edition of the Protein Spotlight articles.

If the project succeeds, we will be able to distribute copies to bookshops, newspapers and magazines, but also to libraries and perhaps even teachers and their classes.

We would like THE NAKED PROTEIN to look like a book you would pick up, flip through, refer to or even display on your bookshelf. Which is why we will be taking great care in its production: from the cover design to the choice of paper and the printing. With every donation, you will receive at least one copy of the book.

  • what readers have said about the blog

«… your articles fall into a very rare category where they are accessible to everyone, from the undergraduate students to research students. Some of your articles are outstanding pieces.» Senior Researcher in Genomics, India

«You are doing this THING: kneading hard-wired facts on proteins and genes, making the ’stew’ digestible for a simple polyglot, physician, amateur mathematician like me fantastically readable. Hail to thee!!» Karlstad, Sweden

«…your writing is deep yet simple, especially explaining the significance of molecules that sustain life in an easy and story-telling manner and correlating it with the real life problems. …very inspiring to young Science aspirants.» Research Scholar in Biotechnology, India


the bright - and the dark - side of proteins

Proteins are what keep our heart beating, our lungs breathing, our legs walking, our brains remembering, our eyes seeing, our ears hearing, our noses smelling, our tongues tasting, our voices talking. Without them: you wouldn’t be reading these words… And if a protein is hindered, it can cause havoc such as cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, diabetes, autism, blindness, deafness…

Naturally, the more researchers know about the bright - but also the dark - side of proteins, the more they will be able to design drugs to fight against certain forms of cancer, for instance, or to create insecticides that cause less harm to the environment.


why we need your help

The SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics is a non-profit institution and all Protein Spotlight articles are online and distributed for free. This is why we need your help to publish 1000 copies of THE NAKED PROTEIN - for you, for you and a friend, or perhaps you are (or someone you know is) teaching a class of students.

All stages of the publication will be produced locally, which does not keep costs low but does help to support the work of local (Swiss) craftsmen and women:

Cover illustration:

Graphic design:

Printing and binding:

The book will be a stiff paperback with front and back flaps. Format: (17 x 24cm). The cover will be in colour, the inside black and white. Number of pages: 216.

The money you help us raise will be used for:

  • the cover illustration
  • the graphic design (cover and layout)
  • paper, printing and binding of 1’000 copies
  • packaging and postage to send the rewards anywhere in the world
  • commission and fees for wemakeit

If the project succeeds, the sum of 5’000 CHF received thanks to the generous support of Science Booster will be devoted to the cost of packaging and postage.


The book is a Swiss-Prot / SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics production.