The goldendoodle (Figure 1) is a breed of dog created to combine the desirable features of the golden retriever (calm personality, good with people and an excellent service dog) with those of the poodle (low shedding and hypoallergenic). The result surpasses expectations: not only does the goldendoodle have a great personality and low shedding, but also the animal is exceedingly cute and in great demand. Protein design, the creation of novel proteins either de novo or by extensive mutagenesis of natural proteins, has likewise produced many ‘goldendoodle-esque’ proteins whose unprecedented combination of stability and function have revolutionized academic and clinical research. Here, we discuss the history of protein design and highlight some particularly successful protein designs of this type.

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