Project Group Leader, Structural Biochemistry
Quantitative Electron Cryotomography
Understanding how proteins and other biological macromolecules perform their complex tasks in the living cell often requires knowledge of their 3D structures at the atomic level. Recent developments in structural biology have allowed for the visualization of these processes in their native, unperturbed cellular environment at high resolution. In-situ cryo-electron tomography is a groundbreaking technology that not only offers 3D visualization of protein structures, but also provides information about the cellular environment superintending protein function. This contextual information can be analyzed either with molecular- or cellular-oriented approaches. To maximize the potential of these interrelated methods, such cellular systems must first be characterized quantitatively. However, to obtain meaningful data through quantitative analyses, the acquisition of large datasets is necessary – presenting a bottleneck in current workflows.
Our group focuses on the hardware developments that are necessary in order to enable and optimize high-throughput cryo-electron tomography workflows. These developments include the automation of sample preparation techniques as well as streamlining data-acquisition and post-processing pipelines. With these innovations, we aim to gain quantitative insights into protein sociology and the involvement of cellular components in the biological processes fundamental to life.
Cryo-electron tomography at the MPI Dortmund.
Boltje DB, Hoogenboom JP, Jakobi AJ, Jensen GJ, Jonker CTH, Kaag MJ, Koster AJ, Last MGF, de Agrela Pinto C, Plitzko JM, Raunser S, Tacke S, Wang Z, van der Wee EB, Wepf R, den Hoedt S (2022). A cryogenic, coincident fluorescence, electron and ion beam microscope. eLife
Tacke S, Erdmann P, Wang Z, Klumpe S, Grange M, Plitzko J, Raunser S (2021). A streamlined workflow for automated cryo focused ion beam milling J Struct Biol
Wagner T, Merino F, Stabrin S, Moriya T, Antoni C, Apelbau A, Hagel P, Sitsel O, Raisch T, Prumbaum D, Quentin D, Roderer D, Tacke S, Siebolds B, Schubert E, Shaikh TR, Lill P, Gatsogiannis C, Raunser S (2019). SPHIRE-crYOLO is a fast and accurate fullyautomated particle picker for cryo-EM. Communications Biology
Tacke S, Krzyzanek V, Nüsse H, Wepf RA, Klingauf J, Reichelt R (2016). A Versatile High-Vacuum Cryo-transfer System for Cryo-microscopy and Analytics. Biophys J.