I am intrigued by ability of the new media, such as Virtual Reality (VR), to communicate scientific concepts on a new level.
Currently I am involved into two projects that explore the VR capabilities.
While an awareness of viruses (e.g. seasonal flu, HIV, childhood vaccines) is established in the public, a deeper understanding of underlying biological processes is often lacking. However, the relative simplicity of viruses makes it possible to explain their molecular mechanics in lay terms to the general public. At the same time this simplicity causes a debate whether viruses can be considered as true life forms. Thus, a wide range of fundamental biological and philosophical concepts can be communicated to the public through the subject of viruses.
"Virus Reality" is an interactive game that immerses the viewer into the world of viruses full of molecular mechanics. In the video you can see one of the game levels, where the player explores the geometric shape of a virus capsid by assembling it out of two types of building blocks (i.e. proteins).