Matching Items (5)

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Injection methods and instrumentation for serial X-ray free electron laser experiments

Description

Scientists have used X-rays to study biological molecules for nearly a century. Now with the X-ray free electron laser (XFEL), new methods have been developed to advance structural biology. These

Scientists have used X-rays to study biological molecules for nearly a century. Now with the X-ray free electron laser (XFEL), new methods have been developed to advance structural biology. These new methods include serial femtosecond crystallography, single particle imaging, solution scattering, and time resolved techniques.

The XFEL is characterized by high intensity pulses, which are only about 50 femtoseconds in duration. The intensity allows for scattering from microscopic particles, while the short pulses offer a way to outrun radiation damage. XFELs are powerful enough to obliterate most samples in a single pulse. While this allows for a “diffract and destroy” methodology, it also requires instrumentation that can position microscopic particles into the X-ray beam (which may also be microscopic), continuously renew the sample after each pulse, and maintain sample viability during data collection.

Typically these experiments have used liquid microjets to continuously renew sample. The high flow rate associated with liquid microjets requires large amounts of sample, most of which runs to waste between pulses. An injector designed to stream a viscous gel-like material called lipidic cubic phase (LCP) was developed to address this problem. LCP, commonly used as a growth medium for membrane protein crystals, lends itself to low flow rate jetting and so reduces the amount of sample wasted significantly.

This work discusses sample delivery and injection for XFEL experiments. It reviews the liquid microjet method extensively, and presents the LCP injector as a novel device for serial crystallography, including detailed protocols for the LCP injector and anti-settler operation.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015

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Serial crystallography: beyond Monte Carlo data analysis

Description

The superior brightness and ultra short pulse duration of X-ray free electron laser

(XFEL) allows it to outrun radiation damage in coherent diffractive imaging since elastic scattering terminates before photoelectron cascades

The superior brightness and ultra short pulse duration of X-ray free electron laser

(XFEL) allows it to outrun radiation damage in coherent diffractive imaging since elastic scattering terminates before photoelectron cascades commences. This “diffract-before-destroy” feature of XFEL opened up new opportunities for biological macromolecule imaging and structure studies by breaking the limit to spatial resolution imposed by the maximum dose that is allowed before radiation damage. However, data collection in serial femto-second crystallography (SFX) using XFEL is affected by a bunch of stochastic factors, which pose great challenges to the data analysis in SFX. These stochastic factors include crystal size, shape, random orientation, X-ray photon flux, position and energy spectrum. Monte-Carlo integration proves effective and successful in extracting the structure factors by merging all diffraction patterns given that the data set is sufficiently large to average out all stochastic factors. However, this approach typically requires hundreds of thousands of patterns collected from experiments. This dissertation explores both experimental and algorithmic methods to eliminate or reduce the effect of stochastic factors in data acquisition and analysis. Coherent convergent X-ray beam diffraction (CCB) is discussed for possibilities of obtaining single-shot angular-integrated rocking curves. It is also shown the interference between Bragg disks helps ab-initio phasing. Two-color diffraction scheme is proposed for time-resolved studies and general data collection strategies are discussed based on error metrics. A new auto-indexing algorithm for sparse patterns is developed and demonstrated for both simulated and experimental data. Statistics show that indexing rate is increased by 3 times for I3C data set collected from beam time LJ69 at Linac coherent light source (LCLS). Finally, dynamical inversion from electron diffraction is explored as an alternative approach for structure determination.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016

Sample delivery enabled by 3D printing for reduced sample consumption and mix-and-inject serial crystallography at x-ray free electron lasers

Description

Serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) with X-ray free electron lasers (XFELs) has enabled the determination of damage-free protein structures at ambient temperatures and of reaction intermediate species with time resolution on

Serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) with X-ray free electron lasers (XFELs) has enabled the determination of damage-free protein structures at ambient temperatures and of reaction intermediate species with time resolution on the order of hundreds of femtoseconds. However, currently available XFEL facility X-ray pulse structures waste the majority of continuously injected crystal sample, requiring a large quantity (up to grams) of crystal sample to solve a protein structure. Furthermore, mix-and-inject serial crystallography (MISC) at XFEL facilities requires fast mixing for short (millisecond) reaction time points (𝑡"), and current sample delivery methods have complex fabrication and assembly requirements.

To reduce sample consumption during SFX, a 3D printed T-junction for generating segmented aqueous-in-oil droplets was developed. The device surface properties were characterized both with and without a surface coating for improved droplet generation stability. Additionally, the droplet generation frequency was characterized. The 3D printed device interfaced with gas dynamic virtual nozzles (GDVNs) at the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS), and a relationship between the aqueous phase volume and the resulting crystal hit rate was developed. Furthermore, at the European XFEL (EuXFEL) a similar quantity and quality of diffraction data was collected for segmented sample delivery using ~60% less sample volume than continuous injection, and a structure of 3-deoxy-D-manno- octulosonate 8-phosphate synthase (KDO8PS) delivered by segmented injection was solved that revealed new structural details to a resolution of 2.8 Å.

For MISC, a 3D printed hydrodynamic focusing mixer for fast mixing by diffusion was developed to automate device fabrication and simplify device assembly. The mixer was characterized with numerical models and fluorescence microscopy. A variety of devices were developed to reach reaction intermediate time points, 𝑡", on the order of 100 – 103 ms. These devices include 3D printed mixers coupled to glass or 3D printed GDVNs and two designs of mixers with GDVNs integrated into the one device. A 3D printed mixer coupled to a glass GDVN was utilized at LCLS to study the oxidation of cytochrome c oxidase (CcO), and a structure of the CcO Pr intermediate was determined at 𝑡" = 8 s.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2019

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Serial femtosecond crystallography data analysis of photosystem II

Description

Serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) uses diffraction patterns from crystals delivered in a serial fashion to an X-Ray Free Electron Laser (XFEL) for structure determination. Typically, each diffraction pattern is a

Serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) uses diffraction patterns from crystals delivered in a serial fashion to an X-Ray Free Electron Laser (XFEL) for structure determination. Typically, each diffraction pattern is a snapshot from a different crystal. SFX limits the effect of radiation damage and enables the use of nano/micro crystals for structure determination. However, analysis of SFX data is challenging since each snapshot is processed individually.

Many photosystem II (PSII) dataset have been collected at XFELs, several of which are time-resolved (containing both dark and laser illuminated frames). Comparison of light and dark datasets requires understanding systematic errors that can be introduced during data analysis. This dissertation describes data analysis of PSII datasets with a focus on the effect of parameters on later results. The influence of the subset of data used in the analysis is also examined and several criteria are screened for their utility in creating better subsets of data. Subsets are compared with Bragg data analysis and continuous diffuse scattering data analysis.

A new tool, DatView aids in the creation of subsets and visualization of statistics. DatView was developed to improve the loading speed to visualize statistics of large SFX datasets and simplify the creation of subsets based on the statistics. It combines the functionality of several existing visualization tools into a single interface, improving the exploratory power of the tool. In addition, it has comparison features that allow a pattern-by-pattern analysis of the effect of processing parameters. \emph{DatView} improves the efficiency of SFX data analysis by reducing loading time and providing novel visualization tools.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2019

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Phasing two-dimensional crystal diffraction pattern with iterative projection algorithms

Description

Phase problem has been long-standing in x-ray diffractive imaging. It is originated from the fact that only the amplitude of the scattered wave can be recorded by the detector, losing

Phase problem has been long-standing in x-ray diffractive imaging. It is originated from the fact that only the amplitude of the scattered wave can be recorded by the detector, losing the phase information. The measurement of amplitude alone is insufficient to solve the structure. Therefore, phase retrieval is essential to structure determination with X-ray diffractive imaging. So far, many experimental as well as algorithmic approaches have been developed to address the phase problem. The experimental phasing methods, such as MAD, SAD etc, exploit the phase relation in vector space. They usually demand a lot of efforts to prepare the samples and require much more data. On the other hand, iterative phasing algorithms make use of the prior knowledge and various constraints in real and reciprocal space. In this thesis, new approaches to the problem of direct digital phasing of X-ray diffraction patterns from two-dimensional organic crystals were presented. The phase problem for Bragg diffraction from two-dimensional (2D) crystalline monolayer in transmission may be solved by imposing a compact support that sets the density to zero outside the monolayer. By iterating between the measured stucture factor magnitudes along reciprocal space rods (starting with random phases) and a density of the correct sign, the complex scattered amplitudes may be found (J. Struct Biol 144, 209 (2003)). However this one-dimensional support function fails to link the rod phases correctly unless a low-resolution real-space map is also available. Minimum prior information required for successful three-dimensional (3D) structure retrieval from a 2D crystal XFEL diffraction dataset were investigated, when using the HIO algorithm. This method provides an alternative way to phase 2D crystal dataset, with less dependence on the high quality model used in the molecular replacement method.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016