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Automation of sample handling for protein crystallography

: Dobler, H.; Malthan, D.; Pohl, E.

Society for Biomolecular Screening:
High Information Content Screening : 8th Annual Conference and Exhibition, September 22 - 26, 2002, The Hague, The Netherlands. Abstracts
The Hague, NL, 2002
High Information Content Screening Annual Conference and Exhibition <8, 2002, The Hague>
Conference Paper
Fraunhofer IPA ()
synchrotron radiation; DNA; tracking; protein crystallography; Automatisierung; Handhaben

The European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) Hamburg Outstation is located on the campus of the Deutsche Elektronen Synchrotron (DESY) where the high-energy synchrotron radiation is used to perform experiments in the field of structural biology. The EMBL currently operates five synchrotron beam lines for protein crystallography, which represents the most powerful tool to determine the tree-dimensional structure of biological macromolecules to atomic resolution. The knowledge of the structure is the key for understanding the biophysical properties as well as function and regulation of proteins and DNA. To reduce set-up times, an automated system for handling and mounting of the crystals has been developed by Fraunhofer IPA. Central element of the system is a 6-axis-robot, equipped with a tailored gripper, which moves the crystals between the liquid nitrogen bath and the crystal holder. The poster describes the handling concept, the elements of the system and the features of the control and sample tracking system.