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Metallo-Supramolecular Branched Polymer for Cryo-EM Sample Preparation

Metallo-Supramolecular Branched Polymer for Cryo-EM Sample Preparation
Research Tools and Methods

Key Problem and Market Opportunity

Cryo-Electron Microscope (Cryo-EM) has become the technique of choice for structural biology. However, a major bottleneck in the current single particle cryo-EM is to prepare good quality frozen cryo-EM grids, which often is a trial and-error process. Among many issues, preferred particle orientation and sample damaging by air-water interface (AWI) are common problem in practice.

Current methods for improving particle behavior in vitreous ice required special devices or complicated techniques.

Global Cryo-Electron Microscope market is expected to grow from USD 446.4 million in 2021 to USD 833.8 million in 2028, with a CAGR of 9.3%. The demand for Cryo-EM is expected to expand as it allows the study of biological models while keeping their native and hydrated structural features integral. 

Key Advantages of the Technology

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For apoferritin treated with MSBP, the particles were distributed uniformly throughout the vitreous ice layer with few particles at the AWI . For apoferritin without MSBP, an abundance of particles were trapped in the AWI .

Application of MSBP can alleviate the preferred orientation problem of HA trimmer by protecting particles from AWI such that particles can rotate and distribute more freely . Treatment with MSBP could enhance the final map quality of cryo-EM .


  • A simple method additional to the sample preparation process that could increase the resolution of cryo-EM result without any hardware modification. 
  • Metallo-supramolecular branched polymer (MSBP) synthesized in this invention could keep majority of particles away from air-water interface and mitigates preferred orientation.

Potential Product and Services

Reagent kit for cryo-EM sample preparation

Development Status and IP Strength

IP Status
  • Patent application submitted

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