This work presents RaptorX, a statistical method for template-based protein modeling that improves alignment accuracy by exploiting structural information in a single or multiple templates. RaptorX consists of three major components: single-template threading, alignment quality prediction, and multiple-template threading. This work summarizes the methods used by RaptorX and presents its CASP9 result analysis, aiming to identify major bottlenecks with RaptorX and template-based modeling and hopefully directions for further study. Our results show that template structural information helps a lot with both single-template and multiple-template protein threading especially when closely-related templates are unavailable, and there is still large room for improvement in both alignment and template selection. The RaptorX web server is available at http://raptorx.uchicago.edu. Proteins 2011; © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.