INSTRUCT program

    Structural biology courses in Turku

    Structural Bioinformatics Courses at Åbo Akademi University (Link)

    ‘Basic X-ray crystallography: How to solve a protein structure’,
    22 hrs, 3 ECTS (with theory, practicals and final exam), every year during Feb-Mar and from 2019 during March – April. Turku Centre for Biotechnology, X-ray facility; Responsible person: Tassos Papageorgiou.

    ‘BKEM1100 Protein Structure and Function: Basics of Structural Biology’

    3 op (ECTS??). Part of the Biochemistry masters program at University of Turku. Includes lectures and an exam based on Whitford, D. (2005) Proteins, structure and function (Wiley); lectures mostly in Finnish. Responsible person: Jarmo Käpylä (Dept Biochemistry, U Turku).

    Structural biology courses can also be available in Oulu university.

    Equipment available in Turku

    Here is some of the equipment and facilities you may need in your research. If you want to access these or some of the other equipment we may have, please be in touch with the contact persons below.

    X-ray facility

    Location: Turku Bioscience
    Contact person: Tassos Papageorgiou

    The X-ray crystallography core facility includes an X-ray generator (Rigaku MicroMax-007) equipped with focusing mirrors, an Oxford Cryosystems cryostream, and a MAR345 image plate detector for data collection, several computers for structure determination and analysis, all the latest versions of crystallographic software, and incubators for protein crystallization at various temperatures. The equipment can be used for data collection, initial characterization of the crystals (salt/protein, diffraction limits, solvent content, space group, unit cell dimensions), finding suitable cryoprotectants, and soaking experiments with ligands.

    Protein crystallization

    Location: Åbo Akademi University, Department of Biosciences, Structural Bioinformatics Laboratory
    Contact person: Tomi Airenne tomi.airenne[at]

    Structural Bioinformatics Laboratory is equipped with two state-of-art instruments for screening and testing protein crystallization conditions:
    Mosquito from TTP LabTech can be used for nano-scale automated hanging and sitting drop crystallization setups. It is possible to make several multi-component drops per well e.g. to test different protein concentrations or different ligands at the same time.

    PX Scanner from the Agilent Technologies, the first in the Nordic countries, is a unique X-ray diffraction system. It can be used to test crystals for their X-ray diffraction qualities directly on a 96 well sitting drop crystallization plate without removal of the crystals from their growth environment.


    Location: University of Turku, Department of Biochemistry and Food Chemistry
    Contact person: Pirkko Heikinheimo

    The MiniOpticon Real-Time PCR  from Bio-Rad can be used to monitor protein thermal unfolding in the presence of fluorescent dyes (Thermofluor) in order to optimise protein buffer conditions for crystallisation. Buffers, salts, additives etc. have a strong effect on protein solubility, and finding the optimal conditions where the protein is well-behaved may greatly increase the chances of succesful crystallisation.


    Location: Åbo Akademi University, Department of Biosciences, Biochemistry
    Contact person: Tomi Airenne

    ÄKTAPurifier from GE Healthcare is an automated liquid chromatography system for protein purification.

    Molecular graphics

    Computer classroom
    Location: Åbo Akademi University, Department of Biosciences, Biochemistry
    Contact person: Tiina Salminen
    The computer classroom, which has 18 dual boot Windows/Linux computers, is designed for education in structural bioinformatics and biology.

    Molecular graphics and computation room

    Location: Turku Centre for Biotechnology, Biocity, 5th floor
    Contact person: Tassos Papageorgiou

    The molecular graphics room has 5 Linux computers that run the latest versions of major crystallographic and molecular graphics programs.