Argonne National Laboratory

Structural Biology Center
The Structural Biology Center (SBC) is a national user facility for macromolecular crystallography at the Advanced Photon Source.

The facility uses advanced instrumentation, state-of-the-art software and methods and high throughput technologies. SBC is capable of addressing the most challenging projects in structural biology that include: large macromolecular assemblies (ribosomes, viruses, regulatory protein/DNA complexes), membrane-bound and membrane-associated proteins (ion channels, receptors, integrins). Structures of enzymes and complexes with ligands and inhibitors can be determined at atomic resolution.

The Structural Biology Center enables the atomic-scale study of macromolecular systems using very small crystal samples. It also offers the most efficient data collection and structure determination systems for protein crystallography worldwide. Thanks to recent advances with larger, faster X-ray detectors and automation of laboratory processes for expressing proteins and growing crystals, the time required to solve molecular structures has been greatly reduced. Research that not long ago took months or years may now take only hours. In addition, one need not be a macromolecular crystallographer to take advantage of these facilities; our experienced beamline staff are available to guide even novice users through the entire process.


Argonne collaborators:

  • Frank Collart – Molecular sensors
  • Christopher Henry – Microbial metabolism, enzyme promiscuity
  • Karolina Michalska – Marine sediments archaeal proteases
  • Youngchang Kim – Hypotheticals from select pathogens
  • Gyorgy Babnigg – Microfluidic devices in functional and structural biology

Outside collaborators:

  • Robert Haselkorn – Transcription regulation of heterocyst differentiation
  • Howard Shuman – Legionella secreted effectors
  • Olaf Schneewind – Virulence factors, Yersinia pestis hypotheticals
  • Steve Kent – Racemic crystallography
  • Sean Crosson – Brucella hypotheticals
  • Michelle O’Malley – Cellulases from anaerobic gut fungi
  • Matthias Hess – Unusual cellulases
  • Kirsten Hofmockel – Carbon cycling core enzymes in soil aggregates