Welcome my Xtal pages
Crystal, crystallogenesis, crystallography...
I am a senior scientist (directeur de recherche) at the Institut de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire (CNRS) in the team "tRNA biology and pathogenicity". My research is focussed on the interactions between proteins and nucleic acids and my main investigation tool is X-ray crystallography. How do I get 3D information on my favorite biomolecules? I first grow crystals from the target biomolecules. These crystals are then characterized by X-ray diffraction in order to derive a three-dimensionnal structure of the targets. This 3D picture is eventually analyzed to understand how these biomolecules interact, how they perform specific biological tasks in the cell and how mutations can affect their function. The main steps of such a structural study are shown in the figure below. I also produced a movie in the laboratory to explained this process with more details. This movie is freely available for teaching purposes.
The most difficult step in this scenario is very often the crystallization. Getting good crystals of a biomolecule is not an easy task due to the many physical chemical and biological parameters that are involved in the crystallization process. Indeed, I am particularly interested in this part of the job called biocrystallogenesis. This site provides a few details on my favorite research topics and more general informations about the field of biological crystallogenesis.
Claude Sauter © 2003-2016
Crystallogenesis group - UPR 9002 - CNRS
Institut de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire
15 Rue René Descartes - 67084 Strasbourg - France
tel +33 388 417 102 - fax +33 388 602 218