New trends in high-pressure molecular biophysics

Abstract : Fundamental studies on the effects of pressure on biosystems emerged in the 1960s and 1970s while remaining confined to a small community. This situation has changed gradually in the past few years. First, specific interests in high pressure (HP) for the study of macromolecules have been clarified. Second, instrumentation has made progress, extending the range of measurements and relaxing constraints of the HP environment. Third, high-resolution structural methods, NMR, and macromolecular crystallography (MX) have been adapted to HP. These powerful newcomers complete low-resolution methods such as small-angle neutron and X-ray scattering (SANS and SAXS) and spectroscopic techniques such as infrared (IR) and Raman. Accordingly, there is now a toolbox for integrated pressure-perturbed biophysics, including structural and dynamical aspects. It was an opportune moment for HPMB 2008, an international meeting focused on fundamental research in HP molecular biophysics, held near Paris from December 10-12, 2008. As SR is crucial, in particular for MX, SAXS and IR, HPMB2008 was held at a third-generation SR facility, SOLEIL. Organizing labs were SOLEIL, IBS (Grenoble) and CBM (Orleacuteans). More than 70 participants, including a number of PhD students and postdocs, from nine countries including European Union countries, Japan, Russia, and the USA, attended the meeting. The format of the conference allowed extensive formal and informal discussions.
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Roger Fourme, Isabella Ascone, Gerald R. Kneller. New trends in high-pressure molecular biophysics. Synchrotron Radiation News, Taylor & Francis: STM, Behavioural Science and Public Health Titles, 2009, 22 (5), pp.39-41. ⟨10.1080/08940880903256866⟩. ⟨hal-00522408⟩



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