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Structure. 2004 Apr;12(4):537-45.

Automated sample mounting and alignment system for biological crystallography at a synchrotron source.

Author information

1
Berkeley Center for Structural Biology, Physical Biosciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, Califonia 94720 USA.

Abstract

High-throughput data collection for macromolecular crystallography requires an automated sample mounting and alignment system for cryo-protected crystals that functions reliably when integrated into protein-crystallography beamlines at synchrotrons. Rapid mounting and dismounting of the samples increases the efficiency of the crystal screening and data collection processes, where many crystals can be tested for the quality of diffraction. The sample-mounting subsystem has random access to 112 samples, stored under liquid nitrogen. Results of extensive tests regarding the performance and reliability of the system are presented. To further increase throughput, we have also developed a sample transport/storage system based on "puck-shaped" cassettes, which can hold sixteen samples each. Seven cassettes fit into a standard dry shipping Dewar. The capabilities of a robotic crystal mounting and alignment system with instrumentation control software and a relational database allows for automated screening and data collection to be developed.

PMID:
15062077
DOI:
10.1016/j.str.2004.03.011
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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