Structure and Functional Binding Epitopes of V-domain Ig Suppressor
of T-Cell Activation (VISTA) – Contacts: Jennifer R. Cochran
and Nishant Mehta, Stanford University
Implicated in human cancers including skin, prostate, colon, pancreatic,
ovarian, endometrial, and lung, the protein called VISTA (V-domain Ig
Suppressor of T-cell Activation) indirectly promotes cancer growth by
interfering with T-cell function. In mouse models, antibodies against VISTA
show anti-cancer activity, and are being developed by multiple pharmaceutical
companies for evaluation in clinical trials. It is sometimes seen to
function as a receptor and sometimes as a ligand. A team of scientists has
undertaken structural studies to better understand the function of the VISTA
protein. Read more...
2019 SSRL/LCLS Users' Meeting and Workshops
Our joint SSRL/LCLS
Annual Users’ Meeting attracted over 350 people who
participated in a diverse program over 4 days that included 13 focused
workshops, a full day plenary session, over 90 poster presentations, a town
hall discussion, SSRL and LCLS UEC meetings as well as meet-and-greet sessions.
Several awards were presented:
The 2019 Joe Wong Outstanding Poster Awards were presented to:
- Elyse Schriber (LBNL): Advances in Structure and
Property Determination or High-throughput Materials Discovery Using XFELs
- Aditya Sood (Stanford University): Time-resolved
Dynamics of the Electrically-triggered Phase Transition in VO2
Probed Using MeV-UED
- Kelly Summers (University of Saskatchewan):
8-Hydroxyquinolines in the Treatment of Cancer: A Key Role for Copper in Their
Mechanism of Action
These poster awards are made possible by support from longtime SSRL user,
Joe Wong, Ph.D., D.Sc., Fellow of the American Physical Society, and are given
to the most exciting, novel, and compelling science as presented during the
Thank you to everyone who organized or joined in the activities. While this
event is fresh in your mind, we encourage
your feedback and suggestions for our next joint SSRL/LCLS Users’
Meeting which is being planned for September 30–October 2, 2020.
SSRL Users' Executive Committee Update
UEC Election Results
Election results for SSRL's
Users' Executive Committee (UEC) are in. Please join us in supporting
Timothy Stemmler (Wayne State University) as the new SSRL
UEC Chair and Eddie
Snell (Hauptman Woodward Research Institute) as SSRL UEC Vice-Chair.
We thank everyone who agreed to be nominated and extend a warm welcome
to newly elected members: Angelia Seyfferth (University
Rebecca Page (University of Arizona), and re-elected member
(University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center).
For the coming year, we would like to acknowledge the continuing
contributions of Graham George (University of Saskatchewan)
who rotates from
SSRL Chair to Past Chair, David Bushnell (AtomiX Labs Inc)
who continues in his role of Past Chair, and the entire SSRL UEC for their continued support of
SSRL. Our thanks also to retiring committee members David
(Texas A&M University) and Marco Keiluweit (University of
Honors and Awards
Aina Cohen Receives 2019 Farrel W. Lytle Award
Excerpt from October 1, 2019 SLAC News Article by Bobbi Fagone
Aina Cohen, co-leader of the Structural Molecular Biology Division at SSRL,
is the latest recipient of the Farrel W. Lytle Award. This award celebrates
achievements in synchrotron-based science and efforts to foster collaboration
to make the best use of experimental time for both staff and visiting
scientists at SSRL.
Cohen is being honored for many impressive achievements over the last two
decades. Perhaps two of her most innovative accomplishments working with her
colleagues and team members at SSRL are to fully automate the macromolecular
crystallography experiment including the implementation of a robotic sample
exchange system and to develop the world’s first fully remote accessible
structural biology beamlines.
“Using keen management skills and her science and engineering
background, Aina runs a myriad of projects and support staff, all with the goal
of providing the best facilities possible for the research community,”
says staff scientist and SMB colleague Jennifer Wierman. “Keeping SSRL at
the forefront of x-ray macromolecular crystallography, Aina routinely
spearheads collaborations and innovations crucial to our vision of
excellence.” Read more...
Xinru Wang Wins 2019 Klein Award for Research on Cell Signaling in
Excerpt from September 10, 2019 SLAC News Article by Ali
Xinru Wang received the 2019 Melvin P. Klein Scientific
Development Award for her research on cell signaling in
enzymes. She accepted the award at the SSRL/LCLS Annual
Users’ Meeting and gave a talk about her research during the afternoon
plenary session on Thursday, September 26.
The Klein award recognizes outstanding research accomplishments by
undergraduates, graduate students and postdocs within three years of
receiving their PhD who used SSRL for their research. Established in 2006
by the SSRL Users’ Executive Committee, the award honors the late Melvin
P. Klein, a biophysicist and pioneer in the field of spectroscopic methods,
including x-ray absorption spectroscopy.
Wang’s research explores a small class of enzymes called
serine/threonine phosphatases that play a crucial role in cell function. Her
focus is on a process called dephosphorylation in which a phosphate group is
taken away by the enzyme, either activating or deactivating a cellular event.
She is specifically interested in how these enzymes identify their substrates
– the molecules on which they act to produce chemical reactions –
and how these chemical modifications change their ability to interact with
other proteins. Read more...
2019 American Physical Society Fellows Announced
Excerpt from APS Press Release
The American Physical Society (APS) has elected the Society's 2019
Fellows. The APS Fellowship Program recognizes members who have made
exceptional contributions to the physics enterprise in physics research,
important applications of physics, leadership in or service to physics, or
significant contributions to physics education.
Donghui Lu, co-leader of SSRL's Materials Sciences
Division, with citation “For seminal contributions to the development of
synchrotron-based angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy and the resultant
understanding of quantum materials, especially iron and copper based
Michael Toney, co-leader of SSRL's Materials Sciences
Division, with citation “For many contributions to the development of
in situ synchrotron x-ray scattering and spectroscopy methods for
studies of organic materials, photovoltaics, and electrochemical interfaces
related to energy materials systems.
APS Press Release
Former SSRL Staff Joins BESSY Scientific Management
Jan Luening, former SSRL staff scientist and professor at Pierre und
Marie-Curie University, was recently appointed as the Scientific Director for
the Matter department at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin fur Materialien und
Energie. See announcements by HZB and lightsources.org.
Call for 2020 Panofsky Fellowship Applications – Deadline
November 15, 2019
The Panofsky Fellowship honors SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory’s
founder and first Director, Wolfgang K. H. Panofsky. It is intended to
recognize exceptional and promising young scientists who would most benefit
from the unique opportunity to conduct their research at SLAC National
Accelerator Laboratory. Candidates should be early in their career but
have demonstrated experience at the postdoctoral level with clear potential for
exceptional scholarship, breadth, innovation, and leadership. The
candidate's research plan should encompass one or more areas within the
general scope of the science program at SLAC:
- Accelerator science and advanced accelerator research
- Applied energy research
- Chemical sciences
- Computer science
- Elementary particle physics
- High energy density matter
- Materials and condensed matter science
- Particle astrophysics and cosmology
- X-ray science, including ultrafast science and advanced x-ray
instrumentation, at LCLS and SSRL
For more information, please consult the Panofsky Fellowship page.
Stanford-SLAC CryoEM-Center (S2C2) Image
Processing Workshop, November 18–20, 2019 website
Structural Molecular Biology SAXS Workshop, December 4–5,
U.S. Particle Accelerator School, UC San Diego, January 13–24,
RapiData 2020 at SSRL, March 30–April 4, 2020
The RapiData 2020 course on Data Collection and Structure Solving
will be held March 30–April 4, 2020. RapiData 2020 at SSRL is a practical
course in macromolecular x-ray diffraction data collection, data processing and
structure solution. The aim of the RapiData course is to educate and train
young scientists in data collection and processing methods at synchrotron
beamlines, using state-of-the-art software and instrumentation.
Application to RapiData 2020 is open to all scientists who wish to
learn about the theoretical and practical aspects of macromolecular
crystallography experiments at synchrotron sources. Because the course is
typically oversubscribed, the organizers will select the participants from the
applications based on the need and potential benefits to the applicants.
The application deadline is November 10, 2019. RapiData 2020 Website
User Research Administration
Beam Time Requests
- November 1, 2019 – X-ray / VUV (Feb – Apr 2020
- November 1, 2019 – X-ray / VUV
- November 1, 2019 – Stanford-SLAC CryoEM Center
(S2C2) - see project application guidelines
- December 1, 2019 – Macromolecular Crystallography
Submit beam time requests and proposals through the User
The Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource (SSRL) is a third-generation
light source producing extremely bright x-rays for basic and applied
research. SSRL attracts and supports scientists from around the world who
use its state-of-the-art capabilities to make discoveries that benefit society.
SSRL, a U.S. DOE Office of Science national user facility, is a Directorate of
SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, operated by Stanford University for the
U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science. The SSRL Structural
Molecular Biology Program is supported by the DOE Office of Biological and
Environmental Research, and by the National Institutes of Health, National
Institute of General Medical Sciences. For more information about SSRL science,
operations and schedules, visit http://www-ssrl.slac.stanford.edu.
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