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Phys Rev Lett. 2009 Nov 6;103(19):198102. Epub 2009 Nov 5.

Cryogenic X-ray diffraction microscopy for biological samples.

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  • 1European Synchrotron Radiation Facility, B.P. 220, F-38043 Grenoble, France.


X-ray diffraction microscopy (XDM) is well suited for nondestructive, high-resolution biological imaging, especially for thick samples, with the high penetration power of x rays and without limitations imposed by a lens. We developed nonvacuum, cryogenic (cryo-) XDM with hard x rays at 8 keV and report the first frozen-hydrated imaging by XDM. By preserving samples in amorphous ice, the risk of artifacts associated with dehydration or chemical fixation is avoided, ensuring the imaging condition closest to their natural state. The reconstruction shows internal structures of intact D. radiodurans bacteria in their natural contrast.

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