Welcome

Welcome to the Structural Biology Facility. Since its inception in 2004, the Structural Biology Facility has trained research technicians, and established protein expression, purification and crystallization laboratories accessible to all.

Purpose

The overall purpose of the Structural Biology Facility is to provide access to state of the art structural biology instrumentation for the purpose of applying structural techniques to the analysis of important cancer-related biological macromolecules, providing basic knowledge of disease mechanism, driving research and directing the synthesis of novel therapeutics.

Atomic images of the arrangement of amino acid side chains in three dimensions gives the details needed to visualize the active sites of enzymes, see the DNA binding sites of transcription factors and view the protein-protein interactions of signaling molecules. Function can be understood through determination of atomic structures. Modification of the function of macromolecules is a key to developing specific therapies without side effects.

Services

The Structural Biology Facility has four main services:

  1. Protein Expression and Purification (PrEP) – The PrEP service is dedicated to the high yield production, purification and labeling of protein which is used by investigators for a wide range of purposes.
  2. Crystal Screening and Growth (CSG) – The CSG service uses the Formulatrix Rockmaker LIMS and associated robotic instrumentation to guide the crystallization of proteins of interest.
  3. X-ray – The X-ray service has single crystal diffractometer for solving high resolution X-ray crystal structures.  The system consists of an FRE+ rotating copper anode generator, high resolution optics, quarter-chi goniometer, and an R-Axis IV++ detector.  The service also has a Rigaku BioSAXS-1000 to collect Small Angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS) data on solutions.
  4. Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) – The NMR service operates three spectrometers (400, 500 and 600 Mhz) allowing it to perform a wide variety of NMR data collection including solving protein structures up to 30 kDa.

Access

Access to the Structural Biology Facility is arranged through Dr. Borgstahl.  Contact her by phone at 9-8578.

Access to the NMR Lab is arranged through Dr. Natarajan.  Contact him by phone at 9-3793.

Funding

The Structural Biology Facility is supported in part by the following…

 Nebraska Research Initiative

Nebraska EPSCoR IDeA Program

 National Institutes of Health

 National Science Foundation