Match!

A historical perspective on protein crystallization from 1840 to the present day

Published on Dec 1, 2013in FEBS Journal4.74
· DOI :10.1111/febs.12580
Richard Giegé53
Estimated H-index: 53
(CNRS: Centre national de la recherche scientifique)
Abstract
Protein crystallization has been known since 1840 and can prove to be straightforward but, in most cases, it constitutes a real bottleneck. This stimulated the birth of the biocrystallogenesis field with both ‘practical’ and ‘basic’ science aims. In the early years of biochemistry, crystallization was a tool for the preparation of biological substances. Today, biocrystallogenesis aims to provide efficient methods for crystal fabrication and a means to optimize crystal quality for X-ray crystallography. The historical development of crystallization methods for structural biology occurred first in conjunction with that of biochemical and genetic methods for macromolecule production, then with the development of structure determination methodologies and, recently, with routine access to synchrotron X-ray sources. Previously, the identification of conditions that sustain crystal growth occurred mostly empirically but, in recent decades, this has moved progressively towards more rationality as a result of a deeper understanding of the physical chemistry of protein crystal growth and the use of idea-driven screening and high-throughput procedures. Protein and nucleic acid engineering procedures to facilitate crystallization, as well as crystallization methods in gelled-media or by counter-diffusion, represent recent important achievements, although the underlying concepts are old. The new nanotechnologies have brought a significant improvement in the practice of protein crystallization. Today, the increasing number of crystal structures deposited in the Protein Data Bank could mean that crystallization is no longer a bottleneck. This is not the case, however, because structural biology projects always become more challenging and thereby require adapted methods to enable the growth of the appropriate crystals, notably macromolecular assemblages.
  • References (330)
  • Citations (60)
References330
Newest
#1Christian Löw (KI: Karolinska Institutet)H-Index: 16
#2Per Moberg (KI: Karolinska Institutet)H-Index: 8
Last.Pär Nordlund (KI: Karolinska Institutet)H-Index: 46
view all 8 authors...
#1Irene Russo Krauss (University of Naples Federico II)H-Index: 14
#2Antonello Merlino (University of Naples Federico II)H-Index: 29
Last.Filomena Sica (University of Naples Federico II)H-Index: 17
view all 4 authors...
#1Yuzuru Itoh (UTokyo: University of Tokyo)H-Index: 9
#2Markus J. Bröcker (Yale University)H-Index: 8
Last.Shigeyuki Yokoyama (UTokyo: University of Tokyo)H-Index: 91
view all 7 authors...
#1Monique Gangloff (University of Cambridge)H-Index: 20
#2Abel Moreno (UNAM: National Autonomous University of Mexico)H-Index: 18
Cited By60
Newest
#1Jeliazko R. Jeliazkov (Johns Hopkins University)H-Index: 5
#2Aaron C. Robinson (Johns Hopkins University)H-Index: 4
Last.Jeffrey J. Gray (Johns Hopkins University)H-Index: 38
view all 5 authors...
#1V. V. Safronov (RAS: Russian Academy of Sciences)H-Index: 2
#2N. V. Krivonogova (RAS: Russian Academy of Sciences)H-Index: 1
Last.V. I. Strelov (RAS: Russian Academy of Sciences)H-Index: 4
view all 4 authors...
#1Jorge A. Ferreira (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven)H-Index: 5
#2Filipa Castro (University of Minho)H-Index: 5
Last.Simon Kuhn (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven)H-Index: 20
view all 4 authors...
#1Yu. V. Kordonskaya (RAS: Russian Academy of Sciences)H-Index: 1
#2V. I. Timofeev (RAS: Russian Academy of Sciences)H-Index: 7
Last.Mikhail V. Kovalchuk (SPbU: Saint Petersburg State University)H-Index: 2
view all 7 authors...
View next paperIntroduction to protein crystallization