Center for Structural Biology
The newly formed Center for Structural Biology (CSB) will serve as the focus for structural biology activities across the CCR. The Center's foundation is built from the merger of the Structural Biophysics Laboratory and the Macromolecular Crystallography Laboratory.
The Center will: 1) plan, develop and conduct research studies on the molecular structure and interactions of biological macromolecules and therapeutics pertinent to human health, with a particular emphasis on cancer and infection; 2) support training of personnel in advanced structural methods; 3) develop and apply new tools for molecular characterization using novel biophysical and biochemical techniques including cryo-electron microscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, x-ray diffraction and scattering methods; 4) lead methods development to enable full understanding of large, multi-component molecular machines; and 5) apply structural and chemical insights to develop mechanistic understanding to inform therapeutics strategies.
PI & Key Staff
The Center for Structural Biology offers several resources to CCR and other NIH intramural investigators.
The Biophysics Resource (BR), operated by the Center, provides CCR investigators with access to both the latest instrumentation and expertise in characterizing the biophysical aspects of systems under structural investigation.
The Biophysics Resource operates as an open, shared-use facility; in general, BR users learn to operate the instruments and conduct their own experients. Our staff members train all first-time users and are also available to consult with investigators on experimental design/analysis or collaborate with them on more complex studies. To learn more, visit the Biophysics Resource.
The Cryo-EM Facility is equipped with state-of-the-art cryogenic electron microscopes and the most advanced specimen preparation equipment. Our mission is primarily to serve the CSB community, but microscope time is also available to other NCI and NIH intramural research groups. Training is available in sample preparation and cryo-EM operation as well as collaborations for structure determination. For detailed information and procedures to access this facility or a full list of microscopes and specimen preparation device, visit the Cryo-EM Facility.
The Crystallization Facility provides an automated environment for setting up crystallization experiments, storing the resulting plates, and monitoring the status of prepared droplets. The Facility also provides support in interpretation of results as well as collaborative efforts involving X-ray crystallography. The Facility is in Building 538, Rooms 215 and 222. To learn more, visit the Crystallization Facility.
NMR Facility for Biological Research
The NMR Facility for Biological Research is a state-of-the-art nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) facility that researchers use to solve atomic resolution three-dimensional (3D) structures, probe molecular dynamics, and aid in structure-based drug design and molecular targeting. The facility is managed by Dr. Janusz Koscielniak, who is an expert in NMR spectrometer hardware and software. The instruments have been used to study how nucleic acids bind inhibitors, define new functional interaction sites in bio machines, and to reveal structural and dynamic properties critical to biological function. To learn more, visit the NMR Facility for Biological Research.
Protein Technology Core
The primary objective of the Protein Technology Core (PTC) is to establish an experimental screening pipeline for single-domain antibodies termed nanobodies. The PTC, which has recently undergone renovation, is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment. In addition to developing new methodologies, the Core includes a tissue culture facility with the expertise to support researchers in producing challenging proteins and multiprotein complexes in insect and mammalian cell lines. To learn more, visit the Protein Technology Core.
SAXS Core Facility
The mission of the SAXS Core Facility is to provide support to research projects from CCR principal investigators (PIs), NIH intramural PIs and extramural academic research groups and laboratories. The support includes providing routine access to the APS PUP SAXS/WAXS beamline and in-house SAXS instrument, and expertise in experimental design, data collection, processing, analysis and interpretation. Our main focus is to determine the structure of biomacromolecules and their complexes in solution. The research field includes, but is not limited to, structural studies of nucleic acids, proteins, protein assemblies, virus particles, lipid membranes, protein/DNA and protein/RNA complexes. To learn more, visit the SAXS Core Facility.
There are several seminar series available to staff members interested in structural biology and/or molecular discovery.
Center for Structural Biology Seminar Series 2023-2024
All seminars in the Center for Structural Biology series will be held from 11am - 12pm in the main auditorium of the B549 Conference Center.
October 31, 2023 Sebastian Klinge, The Rockefeller University
November 14, 2023 Julie Forman-Kay, SickKids Hospital Toronto
January 16, 2024 Joyce Ohm, Roswell Park Cancer Institute
February 20, 2024 Tim Grant, University of Wisconsin-Madison
February 21, 2024 Natalia Jura, UCSF
March 5, 2024 Jochen Zimmer, HHMI, University of Virginia
March 27, 2024 Chris Lima, Sloan Kettering Institute
April 2, 2024 Anne-Claude Gingras, University of Toronto
CBL Molecular Discovery Seminar Series
View the Molecular Discovery Seminar Series, sponsored by the Chemical Biology Laboratory (CBL).
Center for Cancer Research National Cancer Institute
- Building 538, Room 213
- Frederick, MD 21702-1201