Molecular & cellular structures
The first basic step towards understanding the function of certain molecules in the living cell is to figure out their 3D structure. We develop new methods to make the structures of these biological molecules visible.
Image: Reconstruction of the molecular surface of a binding site.
From: de Geus et al. 2009
Topics within this research theme
We use a theoretical as well as a practical approach to visualize atomic structures of molecules. The practical approach focuses on finding the right conditions to make proteins fit for electron or X-ray diffraction. This includes crystallization of proteins and trapping them with nanotubes. The theoretical approach is to develop software to deduce the 3D structures from the results of electron and X-ray diffraction.
We are still working on starting up projects in image analysis and computational methods focusing on molecular and cellular structures.