Software for Automated Generation of Density Maps
Research Tool, software,
macromolecular structure, cryo-electron microscopy, density map,
The Laboratory of Cell Biology
at the National Cancer
Institute (NCI) is seeking parties interested in collaborative
research to co-develop software for the automated determination of
macromolecular structures using cryo-electron microscopy.
The technology available for co-development is computer software
for the automated generation of density maps of macromolecular
structures from a series of 2D digital micrographs of frozen
hydrated specimens collected using an electron microscope equipped
with an ultra-cooled computerized stage. A series of images
of biological specimens collected at different tilt angles relative
to the electron beam are aligned to compensate for mechanical
errors of the stage and combined to obtain 3D images (tomograms).
Sub-volumes containing a single macromolecular complex can be
extracted from the 3D image of a protein solution, or from a
suspension of viruses or cells. The individual sub-volumes of
identical structures are aligned and averaged together to generate
a density map of the macromolecular complex of interest.
Potential Commercial Applications
macromolecular imaging, mapping of molecular interactions, and
determination of molecular structure and reactivity..
Patent protection is not being pursued for this technology.
1. Amat F, et al. Markov random field based automatic
image alignment for electron tomography. J Struct Biol. 2008
Mar;161(3):260-75. [PMID 17855124]
2. Bartesaghi A, et al. An energy-based three-dimensional
segmentation approach for the quantitative interpretation of
electron tomograms. IEEE Trans Image Process. 2005
Sep;14(9):1314-23. [PMID 16190467]
John D. Hewes, Ph.D.
Opportunities available in PDF format require Adobe Reader to view.