IMSS Seminar

IMSS Seminar (15-10) A Brief History of Macromolecular Crystallography

Start:2015/11/04 (Wed) 1:00 PM
End:2015/11/04 (Wed) 2:00 PM
Location:#1 meeting room on the 2nd floor of 4-go-kan

Speaker:Dr. Alexander Wlodawer (National Cancer Institute, Frederick, MD, USA)
Lecture:A Brief History of Macromolecular Crystallography


X-ray crystallography is just over 100 years old as a scientific discipline.
Successful determination of the first macromolecular structures (of oxygen
carrier proteins, myoglobin and hemoglobin) was first reported about 55
years ago. To celebrate the achievements of crystallographers, the United
Nations declared the year 2014 to be "The International Year of
Crystallography". Whereas the celebrations are now over, progress in the
field is not slowing down, and close to 100,000 crystal structures of
proteins and nucleic acids are now available in the Protein Data Bank. I
will discuss the most important, often iconic, achievements of
crystallographers that led to major advances in our understanding of the
structure and function of biological macromolecules. At least 42 scientists
received Nobel Prizes in Physics, Chemistry, or Medicine for their
contributions that included the use of X-rays or neutrons and
crystallography, including 24 who made seminal discoveries in macromolecular
sciences. I will spotlight mostly, but not only, the recipients of this most
prestigious scientific honor. Technical advances that made this success
possible, particularly the use of synchrotron radiation, as well as the
recent introduction of free electron lasers as X-ray sources, will also be

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