Brightness Speeds Search for Structures Great and Small

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Science  29 Aug 1997:
Vol. 277, Issue 5330, pp. 1217-1219
DOI: 10.1126/science.277.5330.1217

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The intense brightness of the new x-ray sources will allow researchers to study biomolecules as never before. For the first time, the ultrasmall crystals of membrane proteins are yielding enough data for researchers to determine their structures. The beams are lighting up the atomic landscapes of protein complexes, such as viruses, that are too large to be studied with fainter beams. And they are turning out the same amount of data in just seconds that previous machines required minutes or hours to accomplish, helping researchers make high-speed movies of proteins as they undergo shape changes.