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Technologies Available for License
Category: biotechnology & health
2014-021:Flex Plate - Innovative Protein Crystallization Tool
Patent Status: U.S. Patent Number 10,753,834 was issued on August 25, 2020
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Protein crystallization is required for structure determination using X-ray diffraction studies. Protein crystallography studies are useful tools for drug discovery, formulation of proteins for pharmaceutical purposes and understanding protein function. Precipitant determination and high through put screening of chemical libraries are crucial rate limiting components in identification of chemical compounds for further bio-medical research. There is a need to improve components and processes that can accelerate these rate limiting steps. The technology describes an innovative crystallization plate for high through put screening of crystallization conditions or chemical libraries.
Flex Plate, is a 96-chamber protein crystallization plate that disassembles into individual pieces (called plate fragments) from the overall plate. This allows protein crystals in each of the 96 chambers to be subjected to diffraction experiments without a plate handling robot or manually removing the crystal from the plate. A snap-on adapter couples-each plate fragment to a magnetic base so that diffraction data can be obtained using a conventional goniometer either at room temperature or cryogenically. The Flex Plate is designed to operate in connection with standard liquid handling robots for high throughput screening of crystallization conditions for crystal discovery projects or chemical libraries for drug discovery projects. There are two different designs of the plate fragment, crystallization screening design that is optimized for crystal discovery projects and the chemical screening design that can support the chemical screening projects. When the design is used for crystal discovery projects, each crystallization chamber is paired with a single precipitant reservoir, so that many kinds of precipitants can be tested. When the design is used for drug discovery projects, crystallization chambers share a single reservoir.
The notable advantages of the Flex Plate are described below: Investigators do not have to manually harvest protein crystals from crystallization plates. Since crystals are never individually harvested using Flex Plate, micro crystals are no more difficult to use than larger crystals. This means that Flex Plate is particularly well suited to miniaturization and reduction of the scale of the crystallography experiment. The elimination of manual handling which allows for the use of small protein crystals allows the use of very small volumes of the expensive reagents and protein supplies. The modular design of the Flex Plate allows one to tailor each type of plate fragment to the needs of each type of experiment. This feature allows users to accommodate many more experiments. The use of the Flex plate, a snap-on adapter couples-each plate fragment to a magnetic base so that diffraction data can be obtained using a conventional goniometer either at room temperature or cryo
Applications and Industries
These innovative crystallization plates can be used for high through put screening of crystallization conditions or chemical libraries.
Journal Publication & Intellectual Property
- US 10,753,834 B2 (.pdf)
- US 10,883,189 B2 (.pdf)
- US 11,795,567 B2 (.pdf)
- A simple technique to reduce evaporation of crystallization droplets by using plate lids with apertures for adding liquids (.pdf)
- High throughput screening using acoustic droplet ejection to combine protein crystals and chemical libraries on crystallization plates at high density (.pdf)
- Acoustic transfer of protein crystals from agarose pedestals to micromeshes for high-throughput screening (.pdf)
Tags: drug development