General Lab Information

All programs

Structural Biology

Investigating and understanding biology through molecular characterization and structure

The Structural Biology Program at Brookhaven Lab’s National Synchrotron Light Source II (NSLS-II) enables discovery-class research on fundamental biological questions. Researchers can use the program’s world-class instruments to investigate the atomic building blocks of a wide range of biological samples using state-of-the-art x-ray scattering and diffraction techniques. The program’s scientific focus is to investigate the molecular structure and function of complex biomolecules using extremely small crystals and molecules in solution. The Structural Biology program is part of the Center for BioMolecular Structure.

Program Beamlines

16-ID LiX

Life Science X-ray Scattering

The LiX beamline is specifically designed for life science applications beyond crystallography. Using x-ray scattering and imaging techniques, LiX’s diverse user community studies complex proteins and macromolecules in solution. Researchers can choose from a broad range of x-ray-based techniques to investigate the properties of proteins and macromolecules in vivo.


Biological X-ray Footprinting and Spectroscopy

The XFP beamline is designed for studying the dynamics and structure of biological macromolecules in solution. XFP provides researchers with a versatile setup and intense broadband x-rays for investigating the interactions of biological macromolecules in vivo. The beamline is operated by the Case Western Reserve University Center for Synchrotron Biosciences. .

17-ID-1 AMX

Highly Automated Macromolecular Crystallography

The AMX beamline is designed to meet the needs of bioscience researchers by revealing the structures and functions of protein complexes. AMX offers researchers a fast and efficient way to quickly discover the best crystals among available specimens and then to investigate them with high precision using state-of-the-art detector systems.

17-ID-2 FMX

Frontier Microfocusing Macromolecular Crystallography

The FMX beamline is optimized to solve bio-crystallographic challenges by offering researchers access to its unmatched micron-sized x-ray beam and high photon flux. Researchers can benefit from the fast sample exchange and temperature-controlled sample environment at FMX.


Biological Microdiffraction Facility

The NYX beamline offers hard x-ray macromolecular crystallography with high energy resolution for the finer examination of proteins and complex biological molecules. The beamline is developed and operated by the New York Structural Biology Center.

The Highly Automated Macromolecular Crystallography (AMX) beamline was developed to address problems in need of efficient data collection on a vast number of samples. The beamline is well suited for biomedical structure determination of complexes in large unit cells, drug discovery explorations and the survey by diffraction of specimens at room temperature.

NSLS-II’s biology beamlines have their own robot whisperer in Edwin Lazo. In this photo he is testing the yellow robot arm of the Frontier Microfocusing Macromolecular Crystallography (FMX) beamline that is responsible for changing the protein crystal samples.

The Life Science X-ray Scattering (LiX) beamline supports experiments in two scientific areas: biomolecular solution scattering and microbeam diffraction from biological tissues. The beamline is equipped to handle liquid samples in two different stages: flowing through a thin tube or static standing a small container.

The Biological X-Ray Footprinting and Spectroscopy (XFP) beamline focuses on understanding the structure and dynamics of protein and nucleic acid macromolecular assemblies in both in vitro and in vivo conditions at single amino acid or nucleotide resolutions, via X-ray footprinting. XFP offers a variety of experimental setups and sample arrangement that can be tailored to the needs of the researchers.

Our Partners

NIH logo
DOE logo

The Center for BioMolecular Structure (CBMS) is primarily supported by the National Institutes of Health, National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) through a Center Core P30 Grant (P30GM133893), and by the DOE Office of Biological and Environmental Research (KP1607011). As part of NSLS-II, a national user facility at Brookhaven National Laboratory, work performed at the CBMS is supported in part by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, Office of Basic Energy Sciences Program under contract number and DE-SC0012704.

NYSBC logo

NSLS-II partners with the New York Structural Biology Center to develop and operate the NYX beamline for structural investigation on biological samples.

CWRU logo

NSLS-II has partnered with Case Western Reserve University Center for Synchrotron Biosciences to develop and operate the XFP beamlines as well as partially partnered on the the FMX, AMX and LiX beamlines.

ASU logo

NSLS-II partners with Arizona State University to develop advanced serial crystallography instrumentation for the FMX beamline.