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EMU: acquisition of a transmission electron microscope for single particle cryo electron microscopy - establishing a cryo electron microscopy open facility at CNPEM

Grant number: 17/15340-2
Support type:Multi-user Equipment Program
Duration: December 01, 2017 - November 30, 2024
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Biochemistry - Chemistry of Macromolecules
Principal Investigator:Rodrigo Villares Portugal
Grantee:Rodrigo Villares Portugal
Home Institution: Centro Nacional de Pesquisa em Energia e Materiais (CNPEM). Ministério da Ciência, Tecnologia, Inovações e Comunicações (Brasil). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Assoc. researchers:Andre Luis Berteli Ambrosio ; Edson Roberto Leite ; Kleber Gomes Franchini ; Marin Gerard van Heel ; Otavio Henrique Thiemann ; Pedro Ismael da Silva Junior ; Richard Charles Garratt ; Roberto Kopke Salinas ; Sandra Martha Gomes Dias ; Shaker Chuck Farah
As informações de acesso ao Equipamento Multiusuário são de responsabilidade do Pesquisador responsável
EMU web page: Página do Equipamento Multiusuário não informada
Tipo de equipamento:Caracterização de Materiais - Microscopia eletrônica/iônica - Criogênica
Fabricante: Fabricante não informado
Modelo: Modelo não informado


The Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) has, since its invention in the 1930s, played a pivotal role in visualizing the processes of life. Many specimen preparation techniques have been developed for imaging biological samples including Cryogenic Electron Microscopy ("cryo-EM") which is typically aimed at elucidating the structure of vitreous-ice embedded macromolecular complexes. The rapid freezing of hydrated biological samples preserves them in a close-to-native state in "vitreous ice", protecting the sample against the structural damage caused by re-crystallization of the embedding medium, and protects the sample somewhat against radiation damage by the electron beam. The aim of this project is to install a high-end 300kV cryogenic electron microscope at the "Centro Nacional de Pesquisa em Energia e Materiais" (CNPEM) - Brazilian Center for Research in Energy and Materials -, creating an advanced cryo-EM facility to serve Brazil and all Latin America. The facility will offer the necessary infrastructure and expertise in: electron microscopy for structural biology; the characterization of vitreous-ice embedded samples; and in electron tomography. CNPEM is a non-profit organization linked to the Ministry of Science and Technology consisting of four National Laboratories dedicated to research and maintaining open-access facilities in: biosciences; bioethanol; nanotechnology; as well as the synchrotron facility. The electron microscopy facility has been in operation for 17 years supporting hundreds of research projects, and successfully training a whole generation of electron microscopists. The electron microscope requested in this project will incorporate many cutting-edge technological developments aimed at boosting the quality and the data-collection throughput. That includes: stable integrated specimen holders; 24/7 automatic data collection; energy filters; phase plates; and last-but-not-least direct electron detectors. CNPEM has a history of EM collaboration with research groups from Brazil - many of them from State of São Paulo - and from other Latin American countries. This collaborative environment forms the basis for establishing the cryo-EM facility that will house the new high-end microscope. The operation of a world class cryo-EM facility will have a significant impact in structural biology research of the State of São Paulo. The scientific cases presented in support of this project range from large complexes to small proteins, including membrane proteins. The active participation by the scientific community to make this cryo-EM facility a success shows that this is a timely initiative and that Brazil and Latin America must participate in the cryo-EM "resolution revolution" that Structural Biology is currently experiencing. (AU)

Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
RICILUCA, K. C. T.; BORGES, A. C.; MELLO, J. F. R.; DE OLIVEIRA, U. C.; SERDAN, D. C.; FLOREZ-ARIZA, A.; CHAPARRO, E.; NISHIYAMA-JR, M. Y.; CASSAGO, A.; JUNQUEIRA-DE-AZEVEDO, I. L. M.; VAN HEEL, M.; SILVA JR, I, P.; PORTUGAL, V, R. Myriapod haemocyanin: the first three-dimensional reconstruction of Scolopendra subspinipes and preliminary structural analysis of S. viridicornis. OPEN BIOLOGY, v. 10, n. 4 APR 1 2020. Web of Science Citations: 0.
MENDONCA, DEBORAH C.; MACEDO, JOCI N.; GUIMARAES, SAMUEL L.; BARROSO DA SILVA, FERNANDO L.; CASSAGO, ALEXANDRE; GARRATT, RICHARD C.; PORTUGAL, RODRIGO V.; ARAUJO, ANA P. U. A revised order of subunits in mammalian septin complexes. CYTOSKELETON, v. 76, n. 9-10, p. 457-466, SEP 2019. Web of Science Citations: 0.

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