Eli5: How do proteins function the way they do


I know all about transcription, protein synthesis and folding etc..
But the fact they’re too “intelligent”, this i fail to grasp.
Proteins seem to be the executive macromolecule in the body, hence they identify substances, work as enzymes, work as hormones, give signals and so on, but is their work exclusively a chemical reaction?
does it need advanced organic chemistry knowledge for me to grasp the concept?

In: 0

They work bc they’re made to do that specific thing. They’re not actually intelligent. Life has discovered that certain proteins will do these things mostly by trial and error over a couple billion years. Hemoglobin doesn’t choose to bond to oxygen, that’s just an inherent quality of hemoglobin. And animals that make hemoglobin have an advantage over animals that don’t, so the hemoglobin making gene gets passed down

Proteins are like strings of magnets that fold over on themselves and end up in complex shapes. The shape is formed by the types of “magnet” in the string and the order that the string is assembled. They are “built” in one direction so there are problems that can occur in this process but generally the same series of bases (building blocks) should always assemble itself into the same shape.

Once it’s assembled, the protein’s particular shape and the properties of each building block (it may chemically/electrically attract or repel other types of molecules) can make the protein a perfect fit to attach to another substance. This can be very specific. Imagine some nutrient your body wants to take in is a puzzle piece and the protein is a perfectly matching puzzle piece. This allows a protein which is actually just a molecule floating around, to “target” and connect to some other specific substance, whether that’s to take in nutrients or fight off a virus. The “intelligence” is in the DNA that guides the creation of the protein, even though it’s also just a string of molecules that gets copied, if it is triggered by the right event to create an appropriate protein, this can look like a very smart response

Well, proteins function very differently depending on what they do. Usually there is a functional group at the end of the amino chain their determines their purpose.