FEI has introduced the Tecnai Arctica transmission electron microscope (TEM) for structural biology research. The TEM incorporates automation, pioneered on FEI’s Titan Krios TEM, to elucidate the 3D structure of biological macromolecules and molecular complexes.
Much of the recent progress in cryo TEM-based structural analysis uses a technique known as single particle analysis (SPA), which combines images of tens or hundreds of thousands of nominally identical particles to derive a high-resolution, low-noise, 3D model. The particles are first rapidly frozen in physiological solution to preserve their native structure. The Tecnai Arctica is part of a tightly integrated, start-to-finish workflow, comprising cryo-sample preparation, data acquisition and analysis, and final visualization, which enhances the speed and efficiency of analysis. Its cryo-sample autoloader, combined with automated target identification and low-dose imaging, enable unattended acquisition of large SPA data sets that are impossible to acquire with manual methods. Its streamlined user interface and extensive automation of routine operations and setup procedures lower the threshold for operator expertise.