Skip to main content

Aug 18 Lecture – Controlling electron beams with lasers

Science at Cal Lecture Series

Controlling electron beams with lasers to reveal protein structure

with Dr. Osip Schwartz 

Saturday August 18, 2018 at 11:00 AM
131 Campbell Hall,  UC Berkeley

Campbell Hall is on Upper campus. If coming by BART, allow 15-20 minutes to walk up the hill from our usual venues. Nearby public parking is available in the Upper Hearst Structure on Hearst and Gayley. Accessible spaces are available on University Drive near Campbell Hall.

On a microscopic level, every function of life is performed by biological macromolecules. To understand how these molecular machines work, it is necessary to know the three-dimensional structure of their constituent protein complexes. Recently, a breakthrough in protein structure studies has been brought about by a series of technological advances in transmission electron microscopes, imaging tools that use electron beams to probe the specimen. However, biological macromolecules are nearly transparent to electron beams, which leads to weak image contrast and hampers the reconstruction of many proteins playing important roles in cellular processes. How can we extract all the information carried by the electrons that have passed through the specimen? In a recent experiment that brings quantum physics to the aid of molecular biology, we used high power laser beams to manipulate the electrons in order to maximize the image contrast of a transmission electron microscope.

Laser-controlled electron microscopy

Osip Schwartz

 

Osip Schwartz is a post-doctoral fellow with the Physics department, where he works with Prof. Holger Müller and Prof. Robert M. Glaeser on bringing together concepts from atomic physics and electron microscopy for the benefit of structural biology. Osip received his Ph.D. from Weizmann Institute of Science, where he worked on super-resolution optical microscopy and quantum optics.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *