top of page


Cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) is the method for structural analysis of molecules. In recent years, cryo-EM has revolutionized structural biology, providing unprecedented information about the structure of molecules at atomic resolution. The 2017 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded for the development of cryo-EM for the determination of the high-resolution structure of biomolecules in solution.
In cryo-EM, the high-energy electron beam scatters the specimen embedded in the vitreous ice, producing images in the detector. The images correspond to the 2-D projections of the vitrified macromolecules. These images are then used to reconstruct the 3-D structures of the macromolecules using various mathematical algorithms. With recent advances in direct electron detectors, improvements in microscope optics and automation, and developments in image processing including GPU-base software, it is now possible to obtain complex macromolecular structures with a near-atomic resolution. 
These advances allow the analysis of drug interactions with protein/nucleic acid targets and show the strong potential of cryo-EM for structure-based drug design.
The Biomolecular Cryo-EM Facility at UCSC provides high throughput sample preparation, data acquisition, and processing, among consulting and project feasibility evaluation.







Listing of Services and Fees

        The facility charges an hourly instrument and manager labor rates. We provide free remote access to the computer resources: storage up-to-90 days and remote acess to workstations for data processing.

All prices are in USD.

Users from all of the University of California campuses are considered in the Internal UC rates.

Users from different academic institutions (Universities and/or Research Institutes) are considered External academic.

         If users are utilizing collaborative fee for service work, are training, or utilize staff assistance, there will be a separate hourly labor charge applied to the reservation in addition to the hourly instrument rate. Consumables such as clipping components, autogrid boxes, and hard drives will be charged at cost. 

        Overnight and 24 hour usage runs until 10 am the following day.

        For additional inquiry, please contact the facility manager at

bottom of page