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Electron cryomicroscopy (cryo-EM) is an emerging technique for solving structures of large macromolecular machines. It does not require crystalline order for the studied specimens. This unique capability makes cryo-EM extremely valuable in imaging and solving the structures and the dynamics of macromolecular machines.
We are using cryo-EM to study the assembly, maturation, and infection mechanism of viruses including dsDNA tailed bacteriophages and enveloped flaviviruses. We are also heavily involved in the development of cryo-EM techniques including image processing algorithms, high performance computing, data collection automation and reliable sample freezing. These technical enhancements are critical in pushing cryo-EM towards near atomic resolution single particle 3-D reconstructions and high resolution tomographic 3-D reconstructions, and to improve the cryo-EM project throughput to ultimately transform the current laborious and lengthy cryo-EM technique into an easily accessible and high throughput tool at the disposal of any biologist.
Ph.D., Baylor College of Medicine, 2001
M.S., Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1995
B.S., Peking University, 1992
Professional Faculty Research
(single particle cryo-EM, electron crystallography, electron tomography, biophysics) Structure of viruses (bacteriophages, alphaviruses and flaviviruses), macromolecular complexes, and membrane proteins; technique developments in cryo-EM for structural determination of macromolecular machines at atomic resolutions; image processing; computational biology; distributed computing