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A fast and fully automated solution for Lipidic Cubic Phase (LCP) screening using mosquito LCP
Joby Jenkins1, Patricia Edwards2, Rob Lewis1and Joanne Franklin1

Membrane proteins, such as G-protein-coupled receptors, are known to be much more difficult to purify and crystallise than soluble proteins due to their native environment within the lipid bilayer of the cell membrane. The in meso (lipidic cubic phase or LCP) crystallisation technique has revolutionised the process of crystallising membrane proteins. This method utilises highly viscous lipid mesophases to contain the membrane proteins for crystallisation.

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mosquito® Crystal: Fast, reliable automation of Protein Crystallization drop set-up
Joby Jenkins, David Smith, Chloe Carter, Wendy Gaisford

Automation of protein crystallography screening has contributed significantly to the rapid progress of crystallography based structural biology. Automation allows samples to be screened using smaller volumes of both protein and screen solutions, reducing costs and saving valuable protein. Additional benefits include increased throughput and accuracy. One of the challenges to automating this process is the necessity to accurately pipette solutions of varying viscosities

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Analysis of overall success of robotic crystallization
I. Ivanovic, H. M. Baker, J. S. Lott and E. N. Baker

A total of about 140 different proteins have been commissioned and 62 have been crystallized with a quality suitable for X-ray diffraction (45%). On a per-drop basis, 300 crystallization experiments have been successful, representing an over¬all success rate of 3%. PEG 3350 was the precipitant for 20, making it the single most successful crystallization agent.

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Strategies for expression and solubility analysis

Production of soluble protein is one of the major bottlenecks that precede crystallographic studies.During the last years several techniques and strategies have been developed to address this problem. However, many of them imply an economical cost and technologies that are not always available. We will describe a general plan for protein solubility analysis by using a combination of four different but complementary strategies. In this plan, different constructs of a protein interest are designed

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Automating Microseeding Protein Crystallography Set-ups Using Mosquito
Joby Jenkins, David Smith, Rob Lewis, Chloe Carter

Crystallising proteins, required for structure determination by X-ray diffraction, is a difficult and labour-intensive task. The mosquito liquid handler (TTP LabTech) is ideally suited to automating the complex set-ups required for microseeding due to its precide handling of extremely low volumes of even viscous solutions, and its ability to perform multiple aspirations and dispenses with each pipette.

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Automated Single Crystal Structure Determination - A Tool for Synthetic Chemists?
Bernd Hinrichsen, Martin Adam, Michael Carr, Dieter Schollmeyer,

During recent years large improvements in software functionality and its ease-of-use have made single crystal X-ray structure determination easier than ever. These days most structures can be measured, processed, solved and refined using well selected defaults with no or little crystallographic knowledge. Recently, microfocus sources and CCD detectors both air-cooled, have entered the marketplace. Combining these innovations with an automated sample loader and an intelligent graphical user inte

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Advances in Crystallographic Hardware for Structural Biology
Matthew Benning and Michael Ruf, Bruker AXS Inc., East Cheryl Parkway

The number of life science investigators utilizing crystallography in their research increases every year. Synchrotrons are an invaluable resource for structural work but not everyone has unlimited access to a beamline. In-house diffraction systems complement synchrotron access and can provide increased productivity in the home lab. In recent years, the performance and versatility of in-house systems has greatly improved. The enhanced performance allows data collection on demanding projects such

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MED-SuMo and MED-Hybridise: exploit all PDB macromolecule structures to design/optimize innovative leads
Moriaud F., Oguievetskaia K., Adcock S.A., Vorotynsev A.M., Martin L., Doppelt-Azeroual O. and Delfaud F.

Obtaining structural information on fragment-protein target is a key factor and also a major limitation. We’ve used MED-SuMo and MED-Hybridise to query and mine the PDB seeking for similar interaction surfaces. MED-portions were used to design novel scaffolds (GPCR) and decorate a given scaffold (kinase). We have analysed the scaffolds in regard to their diversity, their presence in PubChem, PDB and other libraries.

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Phase Diagram Visualization via Continuously-Fed Crystallization: Experiments and Model
Masano Sugiyama and Victor Barocas

A continuously-fed crystallization chamber is manufactured to allow phase diagram visualization. This microfluidic system allows the experimenter to screen a large range of salt and protein concentrations in one experiment. This allows the experimenter to predict the protein phase diagram in a single experiment. A continuous-feed crystallization chamber has been successfully fabricated and characterized in terms of its flow profile, and has successfully predicted the phase diagram for lysozyme.

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Scientific News
Secrets of a Deadly Virus Family Revealed
Scripps Research scientists uncover the glycoprotein structure of LCMV. The findings could guide development of treatments for Lassa fever.
Serotonin Transporter Structure Revealed
Researchers determined the 3-D structure of the serotonin transporter and visualized how two common antidepressants interact with the protein.
Zika Virus Structure Revealed
Team at Purdue becomes the first to determine the structure of the Zika virus, which reveals insights critical to the development of effective antiviral treatments and vaccines.
Half a Million-Dollar Tick
How proteins present in tick saliva prevent the immune system from running amok.
Promising Model for Hantavirus Drug Design
X-ray crystallography provides drug template against disease transmitted by small rodents.
A Crystal Clear View of Biomolecules
Fundamental discovery triggers paradigm shift in crystallography.
'Molecular Movie' Opens Door to New Cancer Treatments
An international team of scientists led by the University of Liverpool has produced a 'structural movie' revealing the step-by-step creation of an important naturally occurring chemical in the body that plays a role in some cancers.
Crouching Protein, Hidden Enzyme
A new study led by scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) and the University of California (UC), Berkeley shows how a crucial molecular enzyme starts in a tucked-in somersault position and flips out when it encounters the right target.
Spotlight on Acoustic Liquid Handling
Journal of Laboratory Automation special issue highlights how acoustic liquid handling enables breakthrough innovations.
3D Images of Enzymes May Lead to Improved Antibiotics
Research advances understanding of how crucial proteins function.
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