Real-Time Imaging of Previously Unseen Protein Structures

Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) Background
The global protein imaging market size is projected to reach USD 1.7 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 8.9%. The growth in this market is attributed to the increasing adoption of protein therapeutics, technological advancements in protein imaging instruments and consumables, and the increasing focus on miniaturization. However, current instruments are still unable to clearly image biologically important micro-sized membrane proteins.
Technology Overview
Here OIST present a promising imaging system. The imaging system is based on a transmission electron microscope that uses a spiral electron beam sweep on a stationary protein molecule. As a result of the electron sweep and detection, it is possible to visualize, in real-time, a micro sized structure.
The technology is based on a system and method for obtaining a high-resolution image of the molecule array in a protein crystal by improving on techniques of Micro-ED, then translate the phase in Bragg diffraction to a structural phase, followed by magnifying the interference fringe through a beam expander, and understanding of the image output based on Ewald sphere and lattice point. To realize the direct imaging of a micro crystal, the core of this novel apparatus includes an electron source, angle scan coils, a beam expander and a detector. In this novel arrangement, no de-scan coil is required for beam expansion.


Micro protein particle imaging
Real-time imaging
Direct Analysis


Protein Imaging
Drug Discovery

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