Protein Crystallography Station at Los Alamos Neutron Science Center Begins First External User Run


A new experimental station for studying the three-dimensional structure of proteins using neutron beams has just been opened to the national structural biology community at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Protein crystallography with neutron beams enables locating the hydrogen atoms in many proteins with greater precision than when x-ray beams are used. Time at the station is allocated on the basis of peer-reviewed proposals from potential users; requests for this first user run were for three times the number of available hours of the station. Several experiments will compare the results of neutron crystallography with x-ray crystallography for determining the structure of specific proteins. Development and operation of this station is funded by the Office of Science’s Biological & Environmental Research program. The station is part of the Short Pulse Spallation Source Enhancement Project at the Los Alamos Neutron Science Center (LANSCE), which also includes two experimental stations funded by the Office of Science’s Basic Energy Sciences program.