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Clocking electron movements inside an atom

Scientists dramatically enhance the achievable resolution at free-electron lasers with a new technique

20-Jan-2021

Hard X-ray free-electron lasers (XFELs) have delivered intense, ultrashort X-ray pulses for over a decade. One of the most promising applications of XFELs is in biology, where researchers can capture images down to the atomic scale even before the radiation damage destroys the sample. In physics ...

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A clear path to better insights into biomolecules

3D images with record-breaking resolution

06-Jan-2021

An international team of scientists, led by Kartik Ayyer from the MPSD, has obtained some of the sharpest possible 3D images of gold nanoparticles. The resuts lay the foundation for obtaining high resolution images of macromolecules. The study was carried out at the European XFEL’s Single ...

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The Missing Step in the Water Warmup: First Bend and then Turn

New insights into how and how quickly the energy stored in a bent water molecule is dissipated into heat

11-Dec-2020

The water on Earth makes our planet inhabitable. It absorbs the Sun’s energy and releases it in the form of heat. An international research collaboration headed by the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) has now shown how and how fast the stored energy in the water molecules is ...

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Ice on gold

Breakthrough in material science: analysing frozen water atom by atom

09-Dec-2020

How to analyse ice down to its atomic scale? And how to analyse objects embedded in ice without melting it? An international team of material scientists mainly from the Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung (MPIE) found a way to analyse micron-thick layers of ice by atom probe tomography (APT) ...

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The next phase of the proton puzzle

New milestone in frequency comb spectroscopy

30-Nov-2020

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (MPQ) have succeeded in testing quantum electrodynamics with unprecedented accuracy to 13 decimal places. The new measurement is almost twice as accurate as all previous hydrogen measurements combined and moves science one step closer to ...

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New software allows fast and straightforward analysis of environmental microbes

A user-friendly method to reconstruct and analyze SSU rRNA from raw metagenome data

10-Nov-2020

First the background: Microbiologists traditionally determine which organisms they are dealing with using the small subunit ribosomal RNA or in short SSU rRNA gene. This marker gene allows to identify almost any living creature, be it a bacterium or an animal, and thus assign it to its place in ...

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Midbrain organoids for automated chemical screening and disease research

Max Planck Innovation licenses process for the generation of organ-like tissue aggregates to biotech company StemoniX

05-Nov-2020

Sometimes hundreds of thousands of potential therapeutics need to be tested in large-scale, fully automated experiments to identify a single effective drug. Most compounds do not work as desired, and some are even toxic. Since the development of the induced Pluripotent Stem (iPS) Cell technology ...

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World record resolution in cryo-electron microscopy

Novel technique visualizes individual atoms in a protein with cryo-electron microscopy for the first time

23-Oct-2020

A crucial resolution barrier in cryo-electron microscopy has been broken. Holger Stark and his team at the Max Planck Institute (MPI) for Biophysical Chemistry have observed single atoms in a protein structure for the first time and taken the sharpest images ever with this method. Such ...

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New tool helps to ‘spot the difference’ in genome organisation

This enables scientists to track down causes of diseases more quickly

22-Oct-2020

The way DNA is organized in the cell nucleus is very important for the normal development and function of the cell. A mutation that affects the packaging of the genetic material in the cell nucleus can lead to developmental disorders or diseases such as cancer. A team of scientists from the Max ...

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New method: Y chromosomes of Neandertals and Denisovans now sequenced

Neandertals have adopted male sex chromosome from modern humans

28-Sep-2020

An international research team led by Martin Petr and Janet Kelso of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, has determined Y chromosome sequences of three Neandertals and two Denisovans. These Y chromosomes provide new insights into the relationships and ...

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