A major advance in protein structure determination has been the advent of nanolitre-scale crystallization and (in a high-throughput environment) the development of robotic systems for storing and imaging crystallization trials. Most of these trials are carried out in 96-well (or higher density) plates and managing them is a significant information management challenge. We describe xtalPiMS, a web-based application for the management and monitoring of crystallization trials. xtalPiMS has a user-interface layer based on the standards of the Protein Information Management System (PiMS) and a database layer which links the crystallization trial images to the meta-data associated with a particular crystallization trial. The user interface has been optimized for the efficient monitoring of high-throughput environments with three different automated imagers and work to support a fourth imager is in progress, but it can even be of use without robotics. The database can either be a PiMS database or a legacy database for which a suitable mapping layer has been developed.

Original publication

DOI

10.1016/j.jsb.2011.05.008

Type

Journal article

Journal

Journal of structural biology

Publication Date

08/2011

Volume

175

Pages

230 - 235

Addresses

CSED, STFC Daresbury Laboratory, Warrington WA44AD, UK.

Keywords

Proteins, Crystallography, X-Ray, Database Management Systems, User-Computer Interface, Information Management, Databases, Protein, Online Systems