Cryogenic electron microscopy approaches that combine images and tilt series
Cryogenic electron microscopy can be widely applied to biological specimens from the molecular to the cellular scale. In single-particle analysis, 3D structures may be obtained in high resolution by averaging 2D images of single particles in random orientations. For pleomorphic specimens, structures may be obtained by recording the tilt series of a single example of the specimen and calculating tomograms. Where many copies of a single structure such as a protein or nucleic acid assembly are present within the tomogram, averaging of the sub-volumes (subtomogram averaging) has been successfully applied. The choice of data collection method for any given specimen may depend on the structural question of interest and is determined by the radiation sensitivity of the specimen. Here, we survey some recent developments on the use of hybrid methods for recording and analysing data from radiation-sensitive biological specimens. These include single-particle reconstruction from 2D images where additional views are recorded at a single tilt angle of the specimen and methods where image tilt series, initially used for tomogram reconstruction, are processed as individual single-particle images. There is a continuum of approaches now available to maximize structural information obtained from the specimen.
Journal Microscopy (Oxf)
Issue number Supplement 1