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      Graphene-based microfluidics for serial crystallography

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          Abstract

          A robust strategy for the incorporation of graphene films as a diffusion barrier in ultra-thin X-ray compatible microfluidic devices.

          Microfluidic strategies to enable the growth and subsequent serial crystallographic analysis of micro-crystals have the potential to facilitate both structural characterization and dynamic structural studies of protein targets that have been resistant to single-crystal strategies. However, adapting microfluidic crystallization platforms for micro-crystallography requires a dramatic decrease in the overall device thickness. We report a robust strategy for the straightforward incorporation of single-layer graphene into ultra-thin microfluidic devices. This architecture allows for a total material thickness of only ∼1 μm, facilitating on-chip X-ray diffraction analysis while creating a sample environment that is stable against significant water loss over several weeks. We demonstrate excellent signal-to-noise in our X-ray diffraction measurements using a 1.5 μs polychromatic X-ray exposure, and validate our approach via on-chip structure determination using hen egg white lysozyme (HEWL) as a model system. Although this work is focused on the use of graphene for protein crystallography, we anticipate that this technology should find utility in a wide range of both X-ray and other lab on a chip applications.

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          Most cited references 105

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          Large-Area Synthesis of High-Quality and Uniform Graphene Films on Copper Foils

          Graphene has been attracting great interest because of its distinctive band structure and physical properties. Today, graphene is limited to small sizes because it is produced mostly by exfoliating graphite. We grew large-area graphene films of the order of centimeters on copper substrates by chemical vapor deposition using methane. The films are predominantly single layer graphene with a small percentage (less than 5%) of the area having few layers, and are continuous across copper surface steps and grain boundaries. The low solubility of carbon in copper appears to help make this growth process self-limiting. We also developed graphene film transfer processes to arbitrary substrates, and dual-gated field-effect transistors fabricated on Si/SiO2 substrates showed electron mobilities as high as 4050 cm2V-1s-1 at room temperature.
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            Transfer of large-area graphene films for high-performance transparent conductive electrodes.

            Graphene, a two-dimensional monolayer of sp(2)-bonded carbon atoms, has been attracting great interest due to its unique transport properties. One of the promising applications of graphene is as a transparent conductive electrode owing to its high optical transmittance and conductivity. In this paper, we report on an improved transfer process of large-area graphene grown on Cu foils by chemical vapor deposition. The transferred graphene films have high electrical conductivity and high optical transmittance that make them suitable for transparent conductive electrode applications. The improved transfer processes will also be of great value for the fabrication of electronic devices such as field effect transistor and bilayer pseudospin field effect transistor devices.
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              High-resolution crystal structure of an engineered human beta2-adrenergic G protein-coupled receptor.

              Heterotrimeric guanine nucleotide-binding protein (G protein)-coupled receptors constitute the largest family of eukaryotic signal transduction proteins that communicate across the membrane. We report the crystal structure of a human beta2-adrenergic receptor-T4 lysozyme fusion protein bound to the partial inverse agonist carazolol at 2.4 angstrom resolution. The structure provides a high-resolution view of a human G protein-coupled receptor bound to a diffusible ligand. Ligand-binding site accessibility is enabled by the second extracellular loop, which is held out of the binding cavity by a pair of closely spaced disulfide bridges and a short helical segment within the loop. Cholesterol, a necessary component for crystallization, mediates an intriguing parallel association of receptor molecules in the crystal lattice. Although the location of carazolol in the beta2-adrenergic receptor is very similar to that of retinal in rhodopsin, structural differences in the ligand-binding site and other regions highlight the challenges in using rhodopsin as a template model for this large receptor family.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                LCAHAM
                Lab on a Chip
                Lab Chip
                Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC)
                1473-0197
                1473-0189
                2016
                2016
                : 16
                : 16
                : 3082-3096
                Article
                10.1039/C6LC00451B
                © 2016

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