The biopolymer has far-reaching potential from medical therapeutics to replacing synthetic plastics. Armed with a deep understanding of how the enzymes makes acholetin, scientists now have a target for preventing bacterial contamination and the means to produce acholetin for a variety of purposes.
Researchers at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego used the Berkeley Center for Structural Biology’s 8.2.2 beamline at the Advanced Light Source to identify structural details of an enzyme that produces a versatile anti-cancer molecule. By virtue of the its unique, ringed structure the molecule crosses the blood-brain barrier and could be instrumental in fighting difficult-to-access brain cancers.
Viruses have evolved a wide variety of ways to exploit parts of their host cells to avoid detection and to grow. Researchers at the Scripps Research Institute and the Berkeley Center for Structural Biology are learning more about how hepatitis C works to deceive its host cells.
A team of researchers led by NCXT Director Carolyn Larabell, in collaboration with scientists at Heidelberg University in Germany, used a technique called soft X-ray tomography (SXT) to quickly scan and analyze human lung cells infected with SARS-CoV-2. SXT not only significantly shortens the time frame, but provides more detail—increasing the chances of distinguishing subtle changes in the cell.
A research team led by Francesca Toma, a staff scientist in the Liquid Sunlight Alliance (LiSA) and Chemical Sciences Division (CSD), has developed an artificial photosynthesis device with remarkable stability and longevity as it converts sunlight and carbon dioxide into ethylene and hydrogen—two promising sources of renewable fuels. The team used electron microscopy at the Molecular Foundry and ambient pressure X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (APXPS) at the Advanced Light Source to reveal how the device degrades with use, then demonstrate how to mitigate those processes.