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CSIR - Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology

Council of Scientific and Industrial Research
Ministry of Science & Technology, Govt. of India

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Nuclear Magnetic Resonance

Micro-imaging and Spectroscopy

The 600 MHz Avance III HD Microimager and Spectrometer is interfaced with a wide bore (89 mm) 14.1 T magnet system. It is equipped with actively shielded micro and mini probes with maximum gradient strength of 150 Gauss/cm, which provides in vivo images at micron resolution. The system is equipped with volume coils for in vivo imaging and spectroscopic studies with mice and rats - localised in vivo NMR spectroscopy can be carried out from a very small voxel (2x2x2 mm3) in mouse brains. Additionally, the spectrometer is equipped with high resolution triple resonance and broadband probes for detection of X-nuclei (like 13C, 31P) in solution. The current setup is used to study subtle changes in brain atrophy, and understanding neurometabolites, homeostasis and energetics of excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters in different neurological and psychiatric disorders like amyotrophic sclerosis, Alzheimer' disease, Parkinson’s disease, depression and addictions. Additionally, the setup is used for the characterization and development of MRI contrast agents.

Structural Biology

The 600 MHz narrow bore NMR facility was setup to study biomolecular structure and function under physiological conditions in solution. The facility consists of a 600 MHz narrow bore NMR spectrometer equipped with a cryogenically cooled probe. The enhanced sensitivity of the cryoprobe allows de novo 3D structure determination of relatively large proteins (MW > 25 kDa) and nucleic acids as well as their ligand-bound complexes at the physiological condition. The Avance Neo console allows us to utilize many state-of-the-art NMR experiments including parallel detection of multiple nuclei and non-uniform sampling. The facility is useful to perform structural studies of dynamic biomolecules that are difficult to crystallize (e.g., multi-domain proteins, majorly disordered proteins). The spectrometer is routinely used to derive biologically relevant conformational flexibility of proteins and nucleic acids in situ.

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