Body Intelligence constitutes the complexity of the physiological processes which underlie the operation of a biological system. Most of these processes are dominated by mechanisms that are highly reliant on molecular recognition (the ability of one molecule to bind stably and specifically with another). Molecular recognition interactions may generally be termed ligand-ligand interactions and include all enzyme-substrate reactions, antibody-antigen reactions, as well as the interactions of hormones and neurotransmitters with their receptors.
It is impossible to identify a physiological event of reasonable complexity which does not owe this complexity – most fundamentally – to molecular recognition. This renders molecular recognition the most fundamental kind of body intelligence. Furthermore, since most molecular recognition events involve either protein-protein or protein-non-protein interactions, a refined understanding of the structure of proteins is of prime importance in augmenting the body Intelligence afforded by molecular recognition.
Accordingly, Project Gilgamesh recognizes the supreme value of protein design to life extension and sees it as the most basic means of augmenting the intelligence of physiological processes by refining the specificity of ligand-ligand interaction of newly engineered biological processes and modulating the affinity of such interactions, through custom-designed proteins.
The fundamental problem of protein design is the determination of primary structure of a protein from its tertiary structure. This problem should not be confused with protein structure prediction – the reverse problem of determining the tertiary structure of a protein from its primary structure.