New Laboratory X-ray Optics/Source System has 2nd Generation Synchrotron Level Performance for Macromolecular Crystallography

New Laboratory X-ray Optics/Source System has 2nd Generation Synchrotron Level Performance for Macromolecular Crystallography

The Woodlands, TX — May 28, 2003. Rigaku, in conjunction with their sister company Osmic, Inc. (Auburn Hills, MI), announced the introduction of a new X-ray light source system, the Rigaku HomeLab LightSource™, designed to approach the intensity of a synchrotron bending magnet beamline in a "home lab" environment. Based on Osmic's new and revolutionary VariMax™ line of optics mated to the high brilliance Rigaku FR-E SuperBright™ X-ray generator, this system has more than twice the usable X-ray flux, as compared to previous generation CMF/FR-E systems, and has the additional benefit of an adjustable beam for resolving cell lengths in excess of 450 Å. The ability to optimize the beam for a sample's unit cell size, together with dramatically higher intensities, differentiates this source system as being the first of the next generation of X-ray crystallography instrumentation for research in drug discovery and structural biology.

Macromolecular crystallography is the common name used for structural analysis of proteins, viruses, nucleic acids, ribosomes, and carbohydrates. These large biological compounds are grown in solution as single crystals and studied on a molecular level using X-ray crystallography. Until now, there have been limitations with respect to the continued development of the technology - especially that the poor diffracting power of these crystals requires that a maximum amount of X-ray flux is available to minimize analysis times. The high-flux advantage of the new VariMax/FR-E combination allows crystallographers to collect diffraction data from challenging crystals - such as those with larger unit cells or smaller size than previously possible in their home laboratory. Furthermore, less demanding projects can be measured with higher throughput in less time. Thus the benefits to the researcher include: less frequent trips to the synchrotron, better control of most diffraction experiments (since they can be done in house), and reduced time spent growing larger crystals (especially critical for pharmaceutical research where timely target/ligand structures are critical to ongoing drug discovery projects). Rigaku's HomeLab LightSource™ high-flux X-ray system was specifically designed to fulfill these requirements and provide a breakthrough paradigm shift for the way macromolecular structures are determined. Osmic's VariMax™ optics can also be combined with other Rigaku X-ray sources, such as the MicroMax™-007, to provide similar improvements in flux and to allow the added benefit of cell length adjustability.

Rigaku—Leading With Innovation

Since its inception in Japan in 1951, Rigaku has been at the forefront of analytical and industrial instrumentation technology. Rigaku and its subsidiaries form a global group focused on life sciences and general purpose analytical instrumentation. With hundreds of major innovations to their credit, Rigaku companies are world leaders in the fields of small molecule and protein crystallography, X-ray spectrometry and diffraction, X-ray optics, as well as semiconductor metrology. Rigaku employs over 1,100 people in the manufacture and support of its analytical equipment. Its products are in use in more than 70 countries—supporting research, development, and quality assurance activities. Throughout the world, Rigaku continuously promotes partnerships, dialog, and innovation within the global scientific and industrial community.

For further information, contact:

Joseph D. Ferrara, Ph.D.
VP Product Marketing and CSO
Rigaku Americas Corporation
Tel: (281) 362-2300
eMail: Joseph D. Ferrara