BioNMR: Contemporary Trends, Challenges, and Future Prospects


V. Sklenář


National Centre for Biomolecular Research, Faculty of Science, Masaryk University, Kotlářská 2, 611 37 Brno


Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy represents an invaluable tool to investigate the structure and dynamics of biomolecules. Biological NMR is experiencing significant development with new hardware and software tools as well as new methodological approaches appearing on the scientific arena. During the past decade, the most influential developments can be listed as follows: employment of residual anisotropic interactions in partially oriented biomolecules, improvement of isotope labeling strategies for proteins, RNA, and DNA molecules, identification of cross-hydrogen bond spin-spin interactions, sensitivity and resolution enhancement of NMR signals by cross-relaxation compensation, fast data acquisition methods, improvement of dynamics characterization by analyzing the relaxation parameters, introduction of 900 MHz NMR systems, employment of cryogenically cooled probes with greatly enhanced sensitivity, and advancement of protein structure determination using solid state NMR on polycrystalline samples. Along with those achievements, NMR is shifting its focus from “simple” high-throughput structure determination to more functionally oriented applications. The lecture will critically review the recent progress of high-field NMR and will outline the possible developments expected within next few years.