I recently wrote asking about the molecular viewing programs MOLSCRIPT and
RASTER3D, having tried to locate them but with no luck.
I would like to thank everyone who wrote to tell me where I could find them,
especially Neal (nrd at lenti.med.umn.edu), Angelo (mbarg at dl.ac.uk) and Roger Sayle.
To summarise the replies, you can obtain raster3d by anonymous ftp from
raster3d.ua.tar.gz at isfs.kuis.kyoto-u.ac.jp
"A Fast Algorithm for Rendering Space-Filling Molecule Pictures", J. Mol.
Graphics, 6(4), pp219-220, Dec 1988.
To obtain Molscript you have to contact Per Karluis at:
pjk at se.ki.csb.oyster
for an academic license.
"MOLSCRIPT: a program to produce both detailed and schematic plots of
protein structures", J. Appl. Crystal. 24, pp946-950, 1991.
Roger kindly sent me some notes on the functionality of these two
programs which I paraphrase below.
The program Raster3D produces ray-traced space-filling images of PDB
files. There are programs to read a PDB file and generate a scene
consisting of intersecting spheres, and others to display the
resulting bitmap on a SUN or SGI screen or print it on a HP laser
MolScript is a program for producing `Richardson' style ribbon
drawings of proteins. It also acts as a batch process that reads in a
PDB file and a `script' and generates a PostScript image of the
display. In addition to drawing beta sheets as arrows and helices as
ribbons, it can also draw spacefilling, ball and stick, alpha backbone
and wireframe representations of parts of the molecule. Images may
also be suitable annotated with (dotted) lines and text labels. One
feature of MolScript is that it can generate Raster3D scene files
containing spheres, cylinders and triangles to produce "shadowed"
Once again, thanks for the help.