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The BioSAXS workshop at the ALS User Meeting on October 4th and 5th was a big success. The workshop was filled to capacity with attendees coming from many different regions of the US. Participants were given detailed information about the range and capabilities of our new Pilatus detector and the future upgrades to the SIBYLS beamline. The latest advances in SAXS studies on biological systems were discussed, along with updates on current developments of software for SAXS analysis. The afternoon of the second day of the workshop was dedicated to practical hands-on SAXS analysis.

We would like to extend special thanks to our illustrious speakers; Haydyn Martens (EMBL,Hamburg), Frank Gabel (IBS, Grenoble), Robert Rambo (Diamond Light Source, Oxford) and John Tainer (M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston) for their informative talks. Thanks also to Subrata Dutta, Henry Tang, Mitra Sayantan, Rahul Banerjee and Ryan Spencer for presenting their SAXS related projects, facilitating some lively, illuminating conversation. And, of course, thanks to everyone who attended.

For those who were not able to attend this year, we look forward to seeing you in October 2017 for the 8th Annual BioSAXS workshop. In the meantime, be sure to take advantage of our Mail-in HTSAXS program and check out all the different SAXS analysis tools that you can download from our website.

We are pleased to announce the 7th annual SIBYLS bioSAXS workshop:

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Date: October 4th - 5th, 2016

Location: Advanced Light Source (ALS) at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA


The 7th annual SIBYLS bioSAXS workshop will cover frontiers in Biological SAXS. The two-day workshop will provide participants with software tutorial sessions for biological SAXS in addition to hands-on training in experimental techniques. The latest advances in SAXS studies on biological systems will be discussed with particular focus on advances in synchrotron scattering techniques, dynamic and flexible structures in biomolecule, membrane protein scattering, and complementary methods in crystals and in solution. Updates on current developments of software for SAXS analysis pertaining to structural biology will be illustrated.

The first day of the workshop will begin with a brief run-through on current updates. Greg Hura, Berkeley Lab’s SAXS Beamline Scientist at SIBYLS, will introduce the capabilities of the new detector and the future of high throughput SAXS at the SIBYLS Beamline 12.3.1. The keynote speakers, Frank Gabel (IBS, Grenoble), Haydyn Mertens (EMBL, Hamburg), and Robert Rambo (Diamond, Oxford) will continue Dr. Hura’s discussion by elaborating on the basics of SAXS.

Michal Hammel, another SAXS Beamline Scientist at SIBYLS, will give a talk about SAXS modeling, SAXS profile computations using FOX, and calculations of SAXS shape.

Other distinguished speakers, (TBD), will contribute to the basis of the workshop over the two days by sharing complementary experimental approaches and modeling techniques. This will provide for a flux of ideas among workshop participants, and inspire new perspectives for future data analysis. The second day of the workshop will be dedicated to practical hands-on exercises.

Enrollment is limited to 30 participants. 

Organizers: Michal Hammel, Greg Hura

Inquires: Kathryn Burnett

Registration: Registration is now open. To attend the workshop you need to REGISTER for the 2016 Advanced Light Source User Meeting. When you register, indicate that you plan to attend the “7th Annual SIBYLS bioSAXS Workshop”.


Tuesday, October 4th (Building 2, Rm 100B)

12:20 Lunch (ALS Patio and Exhibitor Tent)

14:00 Welcoming Remarks: Michal Hammel, LBNL

14:15 Frank Gabel, IBS, Grenoble

15:00 Coffee Break

15:15 Haydyn Mertens, EMBL, Hamburg

16:00 Coffee Break

16:15 John Tainer, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston

16:30 Update on SAXS at SIBYLS : Greg Hura, LBNL

16:45 Mail-in SAXS at SIBYLS : Kathryn Burnett, LBNL

17:00 End of first day’s workshop

Wednesday, October 5th (Building 2, Rm 100B)

9:00 Short presentations followed by open discussion

10:30 Coffee Break

10:45 Robert Rambo, Diamond Light Source, Oxford

12:00 Lunch (ALS patio and Exhibitors Tent)

13:00 Practical session with mentors (Greg Hura, Michal Hammel, Robert Rambo, Haydyn Martens, Frank Gabel)

16:45 Closing comments, Michal Hammel, LBNL

17:00 End of BioSAXS workshop

2015 workshop participants.jpgOur 6th annual SIBYLS bioSAXS workshop “Frontiers in biological SAXS” was a huge success. A big thank you to all of you who attended and a special thanks to our fabulous speakers:

  • Robert Rambo, Principal Beamline Scientist for the solution state SAXS beamline B21 at the Diamond Light Source, Oxfordshire, UK

  • John J. Tanner, Professor of Biochemistry, University of Missouri-Columbia

  • Chris Brosey, Postdoc with Tom Ellenberger’s Lab, Washington University in St. Louis

  • Carrie Partch, Assistant Professor in Physical and Biological Sciences, University of California - Santa Cruz

  • Samuel Bouyain, Associate Professor, School of Biological Sciences, University of Missouri - Kansas City

  • Dina Schneidman, Postdoc with Sali Lab, University of California, San Francisco

We look forward to another successful workshop in Fall 2016!

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We are pleased to announce the 5th annual SIBYLS bioSAXS workshop “Frontiers in biological SAXS”


Date: October 7-8, 2014 Location: Advance Light Source (ALS) at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory , Berkeley, CA

Small angle scattering (SAS) is experiencing a dramatic increase in popularity within the structural biology community. The availability of synchrotron radiation, low-noise detectors, powerful computing hardware, and better algoritms, has made the technique accessible to a much larger audience than ever before. At the same time, biologists are investigating ever more complex systems that pose increasing challenges to conventional crystallography. The latest advances in SAXS studies on biological systems will be reported and discussed in 2 days workshop by invited experts with focus on following four topics (see program). 1) Advances in Synchrotron Scattering technique 2) Dynamic & Flexible Structures in Biomolecules 3) Membrane Protein Scattering 4) Complementary Methods in Crystals and in Solution

The two-day workshop will provide training on experimental techniques and software tutorial sessions primarily for biological SAXS studies. Participants will also receive updates on current development of software dedicated to analyze SAXS for structural biology. Half day of the workshop will be dedicated for data processing by workshop participants. Enrollment is limited to 30 participants. 

Organizers: Michal Hammel, Greg Hura

Inquires: Jane Tanamachi

Registration: To attend “Frontiers in biological SAXS” you need register for the 2014 Advanced Light Source Users’ Meeting. ALS user meeting will be held at Berkeley Lab beginning Monday, October 6. “Frontiers in biological SAXS” will begin Thuesday October 7th and continue through Wednesday October 8th. When you registering, you must indicate “Frontiers in biological SAXS”

Tuesday, October 7th LBNL Building 2 , room 100B

11:30 Lunch at the ALS patio

12:30 Welcoming Remarks Michal Hammel and Greg Hura “Frontiers in biological SAXS”

12:45 Lois Pollack, Cornell Univesity

13:15 Edward Snell, Hauptman-Woodward Institute

13:45 Lokesh Gakhar, University of Iowa

14:15 Coffee Break

14:30 Greg Hura, LBNL

15:00 Dina Schneidman, University California, San Francisco “SAXS based modelling of proteins with long disordered fragments”

15:30 Sherry Wang, National Cheng Kung University, Taiwan “Molecular architecture and stepwise assembly of IL-33 signaling complex”

16:00 Michal Hammel LBNL “A molecular switch in nucleoid compaction dictates bacterial pathogenicity”

16:30 TBD

17:00 TBD

Wednesday, October 8th LBNL Building 2 , room 100B

9:00 Michal Hammel, LBNL “Data reduction and processing tutorial”

10:30 Coffee Break

10:45 Greg Hura “Data reduction and processing tutorial”

12:00 Lunch Break at the ALS patio

13:00 - till late Practical session with Mentors (Greg Hura, Michal Hammel, Dina Schneidman, Sherry Wang)

Young researchers are encouraged to apply for the Cancun conference “Dynamic Structures in DNA Damage Responses and Cancer” from the 12-15th February, 2014. We expect that there will be lively discussions on both methods and results during the sessions and good opportunities to interact with top colleagues. To inspire your productive discussions the conference venue has breath taking views of the Caribbean Sea and a great beach to enjoy with colleagues. There are a few spots to join the conference and some for late breaking talks so if you or your group members would appreciate this intimate and informative meeting on dynamic structures in DNA damage responses and cancer, then we would encourage you to APPLY. We are putting together many of the people driving advances under one roof to make this a meeting that will prove uniquely productive and informative for those working in this area and seeking collaborators. Although you may have a busy schedule we aim to make this meeting worth your taking the time to participate by directly aiding research progress and collaborations.

A manuscript highlighting the technical capabilities of the SIBYLS beamline has been published in the Journal of Applied Crystallography:

The SIBYLS beamline (12.3.1) of the Advanced Light Source at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, supported by the US Department of Energy and the National Institutes of Health, is optimized for both small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and macromolecular crystallography (MX), making it unique among the world’s mostly SAXS or MX dedicated beamlines. Since SIBYLS was commissioned, assessments of the limitations and advantages of a combined SAXS and MX beamline have suggested new strategies for integration and optimal data collection methods and have led to additional hardware and software enhancements. Features described include a dual mode monochromator [containing both Si(111) crystals and Mo/B4C multilayer elements], rapid beamline optics conversion between SAXS and MX modes, active beam stabilization, sample-loading robotics, and mail-in and remote data collection. These features allow users to gain valuable insights from both dynamic solution scattering and high-resolution atomic diffraction experiments performed at a single synchrotron beamline. Key practical issues considered for data collection and analysis include radiation damage, structural ensembles, alternative conformers and flexibility. SIBYLS develops and applies efficient combined MX and SAXS methods that deliver high-impact results by providing robust cost-effective routes to connect structures to biology and by performing experiments that aid beamline designs for next generation light sources.


Classen, S, Hura, GL, Holton, JM, Rambo, RP, Rodic, I, McGuire, PJ, Dyer, K, Hammel, M, Meigs, G, Frankel, KA, and Tainer, JA “Implementation and performance of SIBYLS: a dual endstation small-angle X-ray scattering and macromolecular crystallography beamline at the Advanced Light Source.” (2013). J Appl Crystallogr 46, 1-13.

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