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This course is aimed at young scientists working in the field of structural biology including biochemists, biophysicists, and those specializing in macromolecular crystallography (MX), electron microscopy (EM), NMR or bioinformatics. Small angle scattering (SAS) of X-rays and neutrons (SAXS/SANS) experiences a renaissance in structural biology allowing one to study native particles and complexes and to monitor structural changes in response to variations in external conditions (temperature, pH, salinity, ligands). Novel data analysis methods and a broader accessibility to high brilliance instruments on large scale facilities significantly enhanced resolution and reliability of structural models provided by SAS. Emerging automation of the experiment, data processing and interpretation made solution SAS a streamline tool for large scale structural studies in molecular biology. The method provides low resolution macromolecular shapes ab initio and is readily combined with other structural, biochemical, and computational techniques in hybrid approaches. The extremely broad range of molecular sizes accessible by SAS, from kDa to GDa, allows one to monitor the interactions in hierarchical systems at different levels of structural organisation.
The course participants are encouraged to bring their own samples to perform synchrotron solution scattering experiments on-site, the results will be used for practical tutorials and discussed on the last day of the course.