The coronavirus structure becomes music: the MIT experiment

We are happy to report this interview with Markus Buehler, programmer engineer and physicist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Boston.

Using sonification, an artificial intelligence technique, Buehler has translated the amino acid sequences in the virus’ protein chain into music: it’s a strategy for understanding how the virus “tricks” our cells.

Listening to the vibrations of SARS-CoV-2, we realise that the virus uses gentle frequencies to be hosted by cells, which will then be reprogrammed by him for his use and consumption. It’s a suavissant charmer: Baby let me in, I’m a tired old woman, says Snow White’s witch, or the wolf who fakes her grandmother’s voice in bed to eat Little Red Riding Hood.

But there’s no good or bad in nature. There’s reality. This is why fairy tales should not be sweetened when you tell children: the bad does not turn into good (there are few conversions of the unnamed), the predator is predator. Pedagogically, it is up to us not to be surprised, but without living every day in a state of alert or panic: even if we are physically more alone than before, it is the dimension of being together with others that loosens the state of defensive stress. But let’s not deny reality: nature is out there, stepmother and benign at the same time, in a magical plurality of forms.

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Maria Giulia Marini

Epidemiologist and counsellor – 30 years in health care. Classic humanistic background, with Latin and Ancient Greek, followed by scientific academic studies, chemistry and pharmacology. Earlier, in an international environment, worked in medical research, moved to health care, with academic specialization in Epidemiology. Later, in consultancy and health care education. Transactional analysis counsellor. Currently, director of Innovation of Health Care of Fondazione ISTUD, acknowledged by the Italian Ministry of Research. Member of the board of Italian Society of Narrative Medicine, a tenured professor of Narrative Medicine at La Sapienza, referee for World Health Organization for “Narrative Method in Public Health. Author of; “Narrative medicine: Bridging the gap between Evidence-Based care and Medical Humanities,” edited with Springer and of international publications on narrative medicine in scientific journals. Last book “The Languages of care in narrative medicine: words, space and sounds in the healthcare ecosystem”. Lecturer in international Academies and Foundations. Since January 2020, President of EUNAMES- European Narrative Medicine Society”

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