Mature Synchrotron Resources

Synchrotron radiation is invaluable for structural biology research. To ensure that NIH-supported investigators have access to synchrotron beamlines for structural biology, NIGMS supports mature synchrotron resources providing Macromolecular Crystallography (MX), Small Angle and Wide Angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS and WAXS), fiber diffraction and other synchrotron-based techniques that generate important structural biology data. These resources provide state-of-the-art instrumentation along with user support and training. They are accessible to all biomedical researchers whose projects are vetted through a peer review process. The Mature Synchrotron Resources (MSR) program is limited to continued support of mature NIGMS-supported synchrotron resources that have one or more established techniques and can demonstrate an active user program through publication of research results or structural models.

To maintain the structural biology beamline resources at a suitably advanced level, replacement of existing equipment and implementation of the latest instrumentation with minor technology development is supported. Technology development that directly advances the service objectives for the proposed technology operations is also supported. Longer-term technology development that will not directly advance the resource objectives during the project period is outside the scope of this program. NIGMS encourages the development of new synchrotron-based technologies in response to the needs of the research community. These efforts can be supported through research project grants (R01 and R21 activity codes) targeted for technology development in areas of the NIGMS mission.

Find out how to apply for funding for an MSR: Limited Competition: NIGMS Mature Synchrotron Resources for Structural Biology (P30 - Clinical Trial Not Allowed) - PAR-22-166​

Active Awards in this Program

Accessing NIGMS Mature Synchrotron Resources:

ALS Efficiently Networking Advanced Beam Line Experiments (ALS-ENABLE)
University of California-Lawrence Berkeley Lab

Principal Investigator: Paul D. Adams, Ph.D.
ALS-Enable provides a centralized collaborative mechanism that  leverages the capabilities and expertise across ALS beamlines to optimize the chances of successful structure determination for both routine and challenging problems.

Biophysics Collaborative Access Team (BioCAT)
Illinois Institute of Technology

Principal Investigator: Thomas C. Irving, Ph.D.
BioCAT operates facilities at Argonne National Laboratory’s Advanced Photon Source as a national research resource for the study of the structure of partially ordered biological molecules, complexes of biomolecules and cellular structures under conditions similar to those present in living cells and tissues.​

Center for Biomolecular Structure at NSLS-II
Brookhaven National Laboratory

Principal Investigator: Sean McSweeney, Ph.D.
This resource provides access to two advanced beam lines for macromolecular crystallography and one for general x-ray scattering studies, as well as smaller programs in macromolecular crystallography correlated with optical spectroscopy, and x-ray fluorescence imaging.

GM/CA @ APS: A Macromolecular Crystallography Resource
Argonne National Laboratory

Principal Investigator: Robert F. Fischetti, Ph.D. and Janet L. Smith, Ph.D.
GM/CA@APS Resource is to provide user access to cutting-edge macromolecular crystallography beamlines 23ID-B and 23ID-D to determine 3-D atomic structures of forefront problems in structural biology. The Resource was founded in 1999 and has been in operation as a national user facility since 2004, providing a full array of cutting-edge technologies for macromolecular crystallography in Sector 23 at the Advanced Photon Source (APS), Argonne National Laboratory.

Macromolecular Diffraction Facility at the Cornell High Energy Synchrotron Source (MacCHESS)
Cornell University

Principal Investigator: Richard A. Cerione, Ph.D.
This resource operates two beamlines devoted to macromolecular crystallography and small-angle scattering at the Cornell High Energy Synchrotron Source (CHESS) in partnership with NSF. Beamline access and user training are provided for macromolecular crystallography (MX), standard cryocrystallography, serial crystallography high-pressure cryocooling, and MX experiments under pressure in diamond anvil cell (DAC). The BioSAXS facility is equipped with automated sample loading, in-line chromatography, and specialized setups for time-resolved and high-pressure measurements. It is possible to collect data using the MacCHESS beamline from a remote networked connection.

National Center for X-ray Tomography (NCXT)
Advanced Light Source, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Principal Investigator: Carolyn A. Larabell, Ph.D.
NCXT develops soft X-ray tomography for visualizing and quantifying the internal structure of whole, hydrated cells and high-numerical aperture fluorescence microscopy for locating the position of specific cellular molecules.

NE-CAT Center for Advanced Macromolecular Crystallography
Cornell University

Principal Investigator: Steven E. Ealick, Ph.D.
NE-CAT is a facility for macromolecular crystallography at the Advanced Photon Source at Argonne National Laboratory devoted to X-ray diffraction studies of macromolecules, which often involve large unit cells, small crystals and weakly diffracting crystals with weak anomalous scattering.

Structural Molecular Biology (SMB) at the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource (SSRL)​
Stanford University

Principal Investigator: Keith O. Hodgson, Ph.D.
SSRL is an integrated synchrotron resource for structural biology research with user access for macromolecular crystallography, X-ray absorption spectroscopy and small-angle X-ray scattering/diffraction services.

For Program information, contact:

Anne Gershenson, Ph.D. and Thomas Cho, Ph.D.
Program Directors​​
Division of Biophysics, Biomedical Technology, and Computational Biosciences
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
National Institutes of Health
45 Center Drive MSC 6200
Bethesda, MD 20892-6200