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Electron crystallography of biomolecules: mysterious membranes and missing cones

Authors
Journal
Trends in Biochemical Sciences
0968-0004
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
33
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.tibs.2007.10.002
Disciplines
  • Biology

Abstract

One of the major challenges facing structural biologists today is the determination of high-resolution 3D structures of membrane proteins. The requirement for detergent molecules to be present makes X-ray crystallography particularly difficult, coupled with the added problems of isolating sufficient (viable) protein samples at high enough concentrations to yield 3D crystals. One technique that enables structural determination with fewer constraints is electron crystallography of two-dimensional crystals, in which small amounts of membrane proteins can be studied in native form in lipid bilayers.

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