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Resolution extension by image summing in serial femtosecond crystallography of two-dimensional membrane-protein crystals

Description

Previous proof-of-concept measurements on single-layer two-dimensional membrane-protein crystals performed at X-ray free-electron lasers (FELs) have demonstrated that the collection of meaningful diffraction patterns, which is not possible at synchrotrons because

Previous proof-of-concept measurements on single-layer two-dimensional membrane-protein crystals performed at X-ray free-electron lasers (FELs) have demonstrated that the collection of meaningful diffraction patterns, which is not possible at synchrotrons because of radiation-damage issues, is feasible. Here, the results obtained from the analysis of a thousand single-shot, room-temperature X-ray FEL diffraction images from two-dimensional crystals of a bacteriorhodopsin mutant are reported in detail. The high redundancy in the measurements boosts the intensity signal-to-noise ratio, so that the values of the diffracted intensities can be reliably determined down to the detector-edge resolution of 4 Å. The results show that two-dimensional serial crystallography at X-ray FELs is a suitable method to study membrane proteins to near-atomic length scales at ambient temperature. The method presented here can be extended to pump–probe studies of optically triggered structural changes on submillisecond timescales in two-dimensional crystals, which allow functionally relevant large-scale motions that may be quenched in three-dimensional crystals.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2018-01

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Experimental strategies for imaging bioparticles with femtosecond hard X-ray pulses

Description

This study explores the capabilities of the Coherent X-ray Imaging Instrument at the Linac Coherent Light Source to image small biological samples. The weak signal from small samples puts a

This study explores the capabilities of the Coherent X-ray Imaging Instrument at the Linac Coherent Light Source to image small biological samples. The weak signal from small samples puts a significant demand on the experiment. Aerosolized Omono River virus particles of ∼40 nm in diameter were injected into the submicrometre X-ray focus at a reduced pressure. Diffraction patterns were recorded on two area detectors. The statistical nature of the measurements from many individual particles provided information about the intensity profile of the X-ray beam, phase variations in the wavefront and the size distribution of the injected particles. The results point to a wider than expected size distribution (from ∼35 to ∼300 nm in diameter). This is likely to be owing to nonvolatile contaminants from larger droplets during aerosolization and droplet evaporation. The results suggest that the concentration of nonvolatile contaminants and the ratio between the volumes of the initial droplet and the sample particles is critical in such studies. The maximum beam intensity in the focus was found to be 1.9 × 10[superscript 12] photons per µm[superscript 2] per pulse. The full-width of the focus at half-maximum was estimated to be 500 nm (assuming 20% beamline transmission), and this width is larger than expected. Under these conditions, the diffraction signal from a sample-sized particle remained above the average background to a resolution of 4.25 nm. The results suggest that reducing the size of the initial droplets during aerosolization is necessary to bring small particles into the scope of detailed structural studies with X-ray lasers.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2017-04-07

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Serial femtosecond crystallography datasets from G protein-coupled receptors

Description

We describe the deposition of four datasets consisting of X-ray diffraction images acquired using serial femtosecond crystallography experiments on microcrystals of human G protein-coupled receptors, grown and delivered in lipidic

We describe the deposition of four datasets consisting of X-ray diffraction images acquired using serial femtosecond crystallography experiments on microcrystals of human G protein-coupled receptors, grown and delivered in lipidic cubic phase, at the Linac Coherent Light Source. The receptors are: the human serotonin receptor 2B in complex with an agonist ergotamine, the human δ-opioid receptor in complex with a bi-functional peptide ligand DIPP-NH[subscript 2], the human smoothened receptor in complex with an antagonist cyclopamine, and finally the human angiotensin II type 1 receptor in complex with the selective antagonist ZD7155. All four datasets have been deposited, with minimal processing, in an HDF5-based file format, which can be used directly for crystallographic processing with CrystFEL or other software. We have provided processing scripts and supporting files for recent versions of CrystFEL, which can be used to validate the data.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016-08-01

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Open data set of live cyanobacterial cells imaged using an X-ray laser

Description

Structural studies on living cells by conventional methods are limited to low resolution because radiation damage kills cells long before the necessary dose for high resolution can be delivered. X-ray

Structural studies on living cells by conventional methods are limited to low resolution because radiation damage kills cells long before the necessary dose for high resolution can be delivered. X-ray free-electron lasers circumvent this problem by outrunning key damage processes with an ultra-short and extremely bright coherent X-ray pulse. Diffraction-before-destruction experiments provide high-resolution data from cells that are alive when the femtosecond X-ray pulse traverses the sample. This paper presents two data sets from micron-sized cyanobacteria obtained at the Linac Coherent Light Source, containing a total of 199,000 diffraction patterns. Utilizing this type of diffraction data will require the development of new analysis methods and algorithms for studying structure and structural variability in large populations of cells and to create abstract models. Such studies will allow us to understand living cells and populations of cells in new ways. New X-ray lasers, like the European XFEL, will produce billions of pulses per day, and could open new areas in structural sciences.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016-08-01

Fixed-target protein serial microcrystallography with an x-ray free electron laser

Description

We present results from experiments at the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) demonstrating that serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) can be performed to high resolution (~2.5 Å) using protein microcrystals deposited

We present results from experiments at the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) demonstrating that serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) can be performed to high resolution (~2.5 Å) using protein microcrystals deposited on an ultra-thin silicon nitride membrane and embedded in a preservation medium at room temperature. Data can be acquired at a high acquisition rate using x-ray free electron laser sources to overcome radiation damage, while sample consumption is dramatically reduced compared to flowing jet methods. We achieved a peak data acquisition rate of 10 Hz with a hit rate of ~38%, indicating that a complete data set could be acquired in about one 12-hour LCLS shift using the setup described here, or in even less time using hardware optimized for fixed target SFX. This demonstration opens the door to ultra low sample consumption SFX using the technique of diffraction-before-destruction on proteins that exist in only small quantities and/or do not produce the copious quantities of microcrystals required for flowing jet methods.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014-08-12

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Direct Phasing of Finite Crystals Illuminated with a Free-Electron Laser

Description

It has been suggested that the extended intensity profiles surrounding Bragg reflections that arise when a series of finite crystals of varying size and shape are illuminated by the intense,

It has been suggested that the extended intensity profiles surrounding Bragg reflections that arise when a series of finite crystals of varying size and shape are illuminated by the intense, coherent illumination of an x-ray free-electron laser may enable the crystal’s unit-cell electron density to be obtained ab initio via well-established iterative phasing algorithms. Such a technique could have a significant impact on the field of biological structure determination since it avoids the need for a priori information from similar known structures, multiple measurements near resonant atomic absorption energies, isomorphic derivative crystals, or atomic-resolution data. Here, we demonstrate this phasing technique on diffraction patterns recorded from artificial two-dimensional microcrystals using the seeded soft x-ray free-electron laser FERMI. We show that the technique is effective when the illuminating wavefront has nonuniform phase and amplitude, and when the diffraction intensities cannot be measured uniformly throughout reciprocal space because of a limited signal-to-noise ratio.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015-02-12

Serial time-resolved crystallography of photosystem II using a femtosecond X-ray laser

Description

Photosynthesis, a process catalysed by plants, algae and cyanobacteria converts sunlight to energy thus sustaining all higher life on Earth. Two large membrane protein complexes, photosystem I and II (PSI

Photosynthesis, a process catalysed by plants, algae and cyanobacteria converts sunlight to energy thus sustaining all higher life on Earth. Two large membrane protein complexes, photosystem I and II (PSI and PSII), act in series to catalyse the light-driven reactions in photosynthesis. PSII catalyses the light-driven water splitting process, which maintains the Earth’s oxygenic atmosphere. In this process, the oxygen-evolving complex (OEC) of PSII cycles through five states, S[subscript 0] to S[subscript 4], in which four electrons are sequentially extracted from the OEC in four light-driven charge-separation events. Here we describe time resolved experiments on PSII nano/microcrystals from Thermosynechococcus elongatus performed with the recently developed technique of serial femtosecond crystallography. Structures have been determined from PSII in the dark S[subscript 1] state and after double laser excitation (putative S[subscript 3] state) at 5 and 5.5 Å resolution, respectively. The results provide evidence that PSII undergoes significant conformational changes at the electron acceptor side and at the Mn[subscript 4]CaO[subscript 5] core of the OEC. These include an elongation of the metal cluster, accompanied by changes in the protein environment, which could allow for binding of the second substrate water molecule between the more distant protruding Mn (referred to as the ‘dangler’ Mn) and the Mn[subscript 3]CaO[subscript x] cubane in the S[subscript 2] to S[subscript 3] transition, as predicted by spectroscopic and computational studies. This work shows the great potential for time-resolved serial femtosecond crystallography for investigation of catalytic processes in biomolecules.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014-09-11