Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Computer Science


Computer Science

Major Professor

Fu, Bin

Second Advisor

DePano, Adlai

Third Advisor

Chen, Yixin


We used a divide-and-conquer algorithm to recursively solve the two-dimensional problem of protein folding of an HP sequence with the maximum number of H-H contacts. We derived both lower and upper bounds for the algorithmic complexity by using the newly introduced concept of multi-directional width-bounded geometric separator. We proved that for a grid graph G with n grid points P, there exists a balanced separator A subseteq P$ such that A has less than or equal to 1.02074 sqrt{n} points, and G-A has two disconnected subgraphs with less than or equal to {2over 3}n nodes on each subgraph. We also derive a 0.7555sqrt {n} lower bound for our balanced separator. Based on our multidirectional width-bounded geometric separator, we found that there is an O(n^{5.563sqrt{n}}) time algorithm for the 2D protein folding problem in the HP model. We also extended the upper bound results to rectangular and triangular lattices.


The University of New Orleans and its agents retain the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible this dissertation or thesis in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. The author retains all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis or dissertation.