Volume 90 Issue 23 | p. 8 | News of The Week
Issue Date: June 4, 2012

Speedy Tool For Crystallography

Structural Biochemistry: Serial femtosecond crystallography achieves near-atomic resolution
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: Analytical SCENE, Biological SCENE
Keywords: free-electron laser, femtosecond crystallography, crystallography, protein structure

Researchers have shown for the first time that a recently developed technique called serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) can take structural snapshots of proteins with near-atomic resolution.

SFX uses a free-electron laser (FEL) beam of high-energy, short-­duration X-ray bursts to determine structures. It can obtain structures from microcrystals that are too small for analysis by conventional crystallographic instruments. SFX could thus make it possible to reveal the high-resolution structures of many biomolecules that have resisted traditional . . .

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