Structural Biology Research at Diamond

Structural biology gives scientists the ability to look in detail at an organism, cell or molecule and determine its function within a particular biological process.
Using state-of-the-art instruments at Diamond, we can gain a detailed understanding of a range of macromolecular components, such as proteins and nucleic acids.  Our powerful analytical tools can capture high resolution information and uncover details about the effect of disease or genetic variations and explore how these can be modified through the use of pharmaceutical drugs.
For many years, X-ray crystallography has been a key tool for the characterisation of macromolecules, complexes and ligand binding, however complementary techniques such as electron microscopy and small angle X-ray scattering are increasingly leading to a more complete understanding of biological processes.
Techniques such as cryo-EM provide a welcome alternative to studying proteins which are hard or impossible to crystallise; it also enables macromolecules to be studied in as close to native state as possible, uncovering wider insights such as protein-ligand interactions.
Fragment screening has also grown over recent years, providing a cost-effective option for accelerating the discovery of new drug targets.
At Diamond, users benefit from access to all of these techniques on one site.  This means a range of approaches can easily be employed to find solutions to complex research challenges.