May 10, 2019

Seminar with Associate Professor Alexandra Ros

A/Prof Alexandra Ros will present, Microfluidic Tools for Serial Crystallography: Time resolved studies and the sample waste problem. 2:00pm – 3:00pm on Wednesday 15th May, Room G.21, Learning and Teaching Building, 19 Ancora Imparo Way, Clayton Campus.

Please join Centre Associate Investigator, A/Prof Alex de Marco for this event.

Associate Professor Alexandra Ros
A/Prof in the School of Molecular Sciences and faculty member of the Center for Applied Structural Discovery (CASD) at the Biodesign Institute.

Abstract
Serial Femtosecond Crystallography (SFX) with X-ray Free Electron Lasers (XFELs) is an emerging technique for protein crystallography. It has allowed exciting new insight into the structure of large membrane protein complexes and enables time-resolved crystallography studies on light activated reactions in proteins. However, SFX with XFELs still faces serious limitations due to sample consumption and necessary injection techniques to allow mix and inject experiments for the study of protein substrate or ligand reaction dynamics. Microfluidic devices allow to address these limitations. First, droplet generation of the aqueous suspension containing the crystals of interest can be readily generated with microfluidic approaches. The synchronization of the generated droplets with the pulsed XFELs requires millisecond control of droplet release, which can be achieved with electrical triggering. Second, mix and inject experiments are facilitated through microfluidic mixers with hydrodynamic mixing strategies. This approach allows millisecond mixing times and >10 ms reaction time points. The versatility of designing such microfluidic devices is demonstrated through cutting-edge 3D printing technology, which also allows the integration of injection nozzles, such as the popular gas dynamic virtual nozzle. Some recent and future applications of these integrated devices for SFX with XFELs will also be discussed.

About the presenter
A/Prof Alexandra Ros is Associate Professor in the School of Molecular Sciences and faculty member of the Center for Applied Structural Discovery (CASD) at the Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University. She received her Diploma in Chemistry from the Ruprecht-Karls University in Heidelberg, Germany, and her PhD from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne, Switzerland.

A/Prof Ros’ current research interests include migration mechanisms in the micro- and nanoenvironment, single cell analysis, surface design and in particular the development microfluidic tools for crystallography. For the latter, her interests cover a wide range of applications including time-resolved crystallography, efficient and low sample consumption injection techniques, microfluidic approaches for crystallization as well as novel 3D printing approaches to facilitate crystallography applications.