Graphene Supported CryoEM Grid Development

University of Michigan Background
Cryogenic electron microscopy (cryo-EM) is an electron microscopy technique whereby samples are cooled to cryogenic temperatures and embedded to a grid-mesh from structural analysis. Advances in this field have allowed scientists to visualize biologic samples at near-atomic resolution, making this technique a possible alternative to X-ray crystallography and NMR spectroscopy which are unable to explore the structures of large protein complexes. However, a major technical hurdle that remains with this approach is the ability to purify a large enough quantity of protein from in vivo samples.
Technology Overview
This technology consists of a novel approach to isolate low-yield protein complexes directly onto a cryo-EM grid. Researchers have found that an antibody-based graphene system allows for the capture of small amounts of protein. The on-grid technique bypasses grid-preparation where a large amount of protein is lost.
Benefits
This technology consists of a novel method to purify proteins onto a cryo-EM grid. Unlike other methods which require first purifying protein and then preparing the grid, this technique utilizes an antibody-based graphene system to purify proteins directly onto the grid. Using this method, there is not wasted protein and much smaller quantities can be used, making in vivo purification possible.
Applications

Protein structure research
Modeling of protein networks

2020-320

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