X-rays and Protein Crystal Samples

Lessening X-ray damage is healthy for protein discovery data too

Protein crystal samples are placed on a small metal tip so x-rays from the adjacent beam pipe can pass through them and diffract off the atoms inside the crystal. Using computational methods, scientists interpret the scattered light patterns recorded by detectors to create an image of how the atoms are located inside the crystal.
ANL Article
Image credit: Wayne Anderson, Northwestern University.

Karolina Michalska, Kemin Tan, Hui Li, Catherine Hatzos-Skintges, Jessica Bearden, Gyorgy Babnigg, and Andrzej Joachimiak. “GH1-family 6-P-β-glucosidases from human microbiome lactic acid bacteria”Acta Cryst. (2013). D69, 451-463. DOI: 10.1107/s0907444912049608