SE(3)-Stochastic Flow Matching for Protein Backbone Generation

FoldFlow for protein backbone generation


The computational design of novel protein structures has the potential to impact numerous scientific disciplines greatly. Toward this goal, we introduce $\text{FoldFlow}$ a series of novel generative models of increasing modeling power based on the flow-matching paradigm over $3\text{D}$ rigid motions – i.e. the group $\text{SE(3)}$ – enabling accurate modeling of protein backbones. We first introduce $\text{FoldFlow-Base}$, a simulation-free approach to learning deterministic continuous-time dynamics and matching invariant target distributions on $\text{SE(3)}$. We next accelerate training by incorporating Riemannian optimal transport to create $\text{FoldFlow-OT}$, leading to the construction of both more simple and stable flows. Finally, we design $\text{FoldFlow-SFM}$ coupling both Riemannian OT and simulation-free training to learn stochastic continuous-time dynamics over $\text{SE(3)}$. Our family of $\text{FoldFlow}$ generative models offer several key advantages over previous approaches to the generative modeling of proteins: they are more stable and faster to train than diffusion-based approaches, and our models enjoy the ability to map any invariant source distribution to any invariant target distribution over $\text{SE(3)}$. Empirically, we validate our FoldFlow models on protein backbone generation of up to $300$ amino acids leading to high-quality designable, diverse, and novel samples.

To appear in ICLR (Spotlight)
Alex Tong
Alex Tong
Postdoctoral Fellow

My research interests include optimal transport, graph scattering, and normalizing flows.