New High-Tech Lab at Fred Hutch Creates 3D Maps of Proteins to Aid Therapeutics and Vaccine Research

A new lab has launched at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center to facilitate the cryogenic electron microscopy (cryo-EM) technique, which uses extreme temperatures and an electron microscope to create 3D maps of proteins.

The detailed images produced by cryo-EM bring the complex movement and structure of molecules to life in high resolution, allowing researchers to better understand their function. This groundbreaking method could ultimately lead to new therapeutics and vaccines targeting illnesses from autoimmune diseases to cancer and infectious diseases.

Fred Hutch plans to continue building up the facility and staff to expand the field, with the goal of eventually moving on from looking at a single protein or virus to bigger structures like cells.