Large protein molecules fold into shapes that are important for their function. These shapes are defined by secondary structures stabilised by hydrogen bonds, packing effects, and sometimes also by the binding of metal ions. Smaller peptides corresponding to these secondary structures tend to adopt only random structures in solution, away from the stabilising environment of the protein. In this project metal ions are used to clip together components of small peptides, thereby stabilising secondary structures (alpha helices) identical to those adopted by proteins. Small peptides so constrained may reproduce some properties of proteins, such as interactions with biological receptors.''