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Evaluating the impact of X-ray damage on conformational heterogeneity in room-temperature (277 K) and cryo-cooled protein crystalsCryo-cooling has been nearly universally adopted to mitigate X-ray damage and facilitate crystal handling in protein X-ray crystallography. However, cryo X-ray crystallographic data provide an incomplete window into the ensemble of conformations that is at the heart of protein function and energetics. Room-temperature (RT) X-ray crystallography provides accurate ensemble information, and recent developments allow conformational heterogeneity (the experimental manifestation of ensembles) to be extracted from single-crystal data. Nevertheless, high sensitivity to X-ray damage at RT raises concerns about data reliability. To systematically address this critical issue, increasingly X-ray-damaged high-resolution data sets (1.02–1.52 Å resolution) were obtained from single proteinase K, thaumatin and lysozyme crystals at RT (277 K). In each case a modest increase in conformational heterogeneity with X-ray damage was observed. Merging data with different extents of damage (as is typically carried out) had negligible effects on conformational heterogeneity until the overall diffraction intensity decayed to ∼70% of its initial value. These effects were compared with X-ray damage effects in cryo-cooled crystals by carrying out an analogous analysis of increasingly damaged proteinase K cryo data sets (0.9–1.16 Å resolution). X-ray damage-associated heterogeneity changes were found that were not observed at RT. This property renders it difficult to distinguish real from artefactual conformationsmore »
Instrumentation and experimental procedures for robust collection of X-ray diffraction data from protein crystals across physiological temperaturesTraditional X-ray diffraction data collected at cryo-temperatures have delivered invaluable insights into the three-dimensional structures of proteins, providing the backbone of structure–function studies. While cryo-cooling mitigates radiation damage, cryo-temperatures can alter protein conformational ensembles and solvent structure. Furthermore, conformational ensembles underlie protein function and energetics, and recent advances in room-temperature X-ray crystallography have delivered conformational heterogeneity information that can be directly related to biological function. Given this capability, the next challenge is to develop a robust and broadly applicable method to collect single-crystal X-ray diffraction data at and above room temperature. This challenge is addressed herein. The approach described provides complete diffraction data sets with total collection times as short as ∼5 s from single protein crystals, dramatically increasing the quantity of data that can be collected within allocated synchrotron beam time. Its applicability was demonstrated by collecting 1.09–1.54 Å resolution data over a temperature range of 293–363 K for proteinase K, thaumatin and lysozyme crystals at BL14-1 at the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource. The analyses presented here indicate that the diffraction data are of high quality and do not suffer from excessive dehydration or radiation damage.
High-throughput structures of protein–ligand complexes at room temperature using serial femtosecond crystallographyHigh-throughput X-ray crystal structures of protein–ligand complexes are critical to pharmaceutical drug development. However, cryocooling of crystals and X-ray radiation damage may distort the observed ligand binding. Serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) using X-ray free-electron lasers (XFELs) can produce radiation-damage-free room-temperature structures. Ligand-binding studies using SFX have received only modest attention, partly owing to limited beamtime availability and the large quantity of sample that is required per structure determination. Here, a high-throughput approach to determine room-temperature damage-free structures with excellent sample and time efficiency is demonstrated, allowing complexes to be characterized rapidly and without prohibitive sample requirements. This yields high-quality difference density maps allowing unambiguous ligand placement. Crucially, it is demonstrated that ligands similar in size or smaller than those used in fragment-based drug design may be clearly identified in data sets obtained from <1000 diffraction images. This efficiency in both sample and XFEL beamtime opens the door to true high-throughput screening of protein–ligand complexes using SFX.
Complementarity of neutron, XFEL and synchrotron crystallography for defining the structures of metalloenzymes at room temperatureRoom-temperature macromolecular crystallography allows protein structures to be determined under close-to-physiological conditions, permits dynamic freedom in protein motions and enables time-resolved studies. In the case of metalloenzymes that are highly sensitive to radiation damage, such room-temperature experiments can present challenges, including increased rates of X-ray reduction of metal centres and site-specific radiation-damage artefacts, as well as in devising appropriate sample-delivery and data-collection methods. It can also be problematic to compare structures measured using different crystal sizes and light sources. In this study, structures of a multifunctional globin, dehaloperoxidase B (DHP-B), obtained using several methods of room-temperature crystallographic structure determination are described and compared. Here, data were measured from large single crystals and multiple microcrystals using neutrons, X-ray free-electron laser pulses, monochromatic synchrotron radiation and polychromatic (Laue) radiation light sources. These approaches span a range of 18 orders of magnitude in measurement time per diffraction pattern and four orders of magnitude in crystal volume. The first room-temperature neutron structures of DHP-B are also presented, allowing the explicit identification of the hydrogen positions. The neutron data proved to be complementary to the serial femtosecond crystallography data, with both methods providing structures free of the effects of X-ray radiation damage when compared with standardmore »
Determine both the conformation and orientation of a specific residue in α-synuclein(61–95) even in monolayer by 13C isotopic label and p-polarized multiple-angle incidence resolution spectrometry (pMAIRS)
Protein’s magic function stems from its structure and various analytical techniques have been developed for it. Among proteins, membrane proteins are encoded 20–30% of genomes, whereas cause challenges for many analytical techniques. For example, lots of membrane proteins cannot form single crystal structure required by X-ray crystallography. As for NMR, the measurements were hindered by the low tumbling rates of membrane (i.e., phospholipid bilayers) where membrane proteins exist. In addition, membrane proteins usually lay parallel to the surface of phospholipid bilayers or form transmembrane structure. No matter parallel or perpendicular to phospholipid bilayers surface, membrane proteins form monolayer structure which is also difficult for X-ray and NMR to provide high-resolution results. Because NMR and X-ray crystallography are the two major analytical techniques to address protein’s structure, membrane proteins only contribute 2.4% to the solved protein databank. Surface FT-IR techniques can evaluate the conformation and orientation of membrane proteins by amide I band. Specifically for α-helical peptides/proteins, the orientation of the axis is critical to decide whether proteins form transmembrane structure. Notice that the traditional FT-IR can only provide “low-resolution” results
.Here,13C isotope was introduced into the nonamyloid component (NAC), which spans residues 61–95 of α-synuclein (α-syn). Then, p-polarized multiple-angle incidencemore » Graphical abstract