It was found that a chiral alkyl group bonded to the cobalt atom in a cobalt complex crystal was racemized with retention of the single crystal form on exposure to visible light. Such reactions, which are called crystalline-state reactions, have been found in a variety of cobalt complex crystals. The concept of reaction cavity was introduced to explain the reaction rate quantitatively and the chirality of the photo-product. The new diffractometers and detectors were made for rapid data collection. The reaction mechanism was also elucidated using neutron diffraction analysis. The unstable reaction intermediates were analyzed using cryo-trapping method. The excited-state structures were obtained at the equilibrium state between ground and excited states.
Synchrotron radiation contributed to the recent progress in protein crystallography. High brilliance and small divergence synchrotron radiation X-ray beam is indispensable to collect diffraction data from crystals of biological macromolecular assemblies. Recent advance on methodologies and technologies on protein crystallography including synchrotron radiation allows us to solve huge biological macromolecular assemblies, such as large virus particles.
The anomalous X-ray scattering (AXS) coupled with a model calculation using reverse Monte Carlo (RMC) simulation, has recently received much attention for analyzing the detailed structure for disordered materials. The usefulness of this advanced AXS-RMC method is demonstrated with some selected examples of molten AgBr, Zr50Cu50 metallic glass and Zr70Pd30 metallic glass.
The iron-sulfur (Fe-S) clusters are ubiquitous prosthetic groups that are required to maintain such fundamental life processes as respiratory chain, photosynthesis and the regulation of gene expression. Assembly of intracellular Fe-S cluster requires the sophisticated biosynthetic systems called ISC and SUF machineries. To shed light on the molecular mechanism of Fe-S cluster assembly mediated by SUF machinery, several structures of the SUF components and their sub-complex were determined. The structural findings together with biochemical characterization of the core-complex (SufB-SufC-SufD complex) have led me to propose a working model for the cluster biosynthesis in the SUF machinery.
A nanoscale structure analysis method using convergent-beam electron diffraction (CBED) is described, which enables us to directly determine electrostatic potential. Applications of the method to crystalline silicon and spinel oxide FeCr2O4 are presented.