This section provides an overview for cryogenic electron microscopes as well as their applications and principles. Also, please take a look at the list of 7 cryogenic electron microscope manufacturers and their company rankings. Here are the top-ranked cryogenic electron microscope companies as of March, 2024: 1.Gatan, Inc., 2.Intertek, 3.Leica Microsystems Vertrieb GmbH.
A cryogenic electron microscope (CryoEM) is a type of transmission electron microscopy that can observe the three-dimensional structure of biomolecules such as proteins by freezing samples in liquid nitrogen (-350°F).
Analytical methods using CryoEMs have developed rapidly in recent years, and in 2017, the Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded to three researchers involved in their development. As a new analysis technique that has been put to practical use in recent years, it is expected to make a significant contribution to the development of various fields in the future, including drug discovery, medicine, and life sciences.
CryoEMs were developed to analyze the three-dimensional structure of biomolecules, such as proteins with high resolution. Conventional X-ray crystallography is difficult to analyze due to the difficulty of crystallizing proteins. However, cryo-electron microscopes make it possible to analyze proteins in solution. It is also possible to analyze high-molecular-weight proteins, which has been difficult with nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) analysis.
Recent active research and development has dramatically improved the resolution, enabling analysis at the atomic level down to 1.5 Å (1 Å (angstrom) = 10 to the minus tenth power of a meter).
With transmission electron microscopes, which are the basis of CryoEMs, it is difficult to observe the structure of a sample containing water molecules, such as a protein, while maintaining its structure, because the sample is irradiated with electron beams in a vacuum. CryoEMs, therefore, allow observation while preserving the structure of the sample by rapidly freezing it in liquid nitrogen (-350 ºF).
When observing the molecular structure of a protein or other molecule with a CryoEM, a weak electron beam is irradiated to minimize damage to the molecular structure of the protein or other molecule by the electron beam. As a result, the resulting image is very noisy. Therefore, we take numerous photographs of the same protein and reconstruct the three-dimensional structure of the protein by averaging a large number of image data. Such an analysis method is called single-particle analysis.
Behind the practical application and performance improvement of CryoEMs are, of course, improvements in the performance of the instruments themselves, such as the electron gun, lens, and camera, including the cooling mechanism, but also many technological innovations, such as new image analysis techniques based on deep learning and improved computing power of computers.
*Including some distributors, etc.
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Hitachi High Tech was established in April 1947 and operates in 26 countries with products and services ranging from semiconductor manufacturing equipment and Medical and Biosystems to Analytical Systems and Manufacturing related equipment and solutions. A unique state-of-the-art technology company with two functions as a manufacturer and a trading company with the motto of "Tackling social issues," the Hitachi High-Tech Group aspires to be a company that pursues not only economic value, such as revenue and profit, but also provides social and environmental value by contributing to resolving social issues through its business activities, including products and services. They also provide one-stop services, such as evaluations and analysis at a global level.
JEOL USA, Inc., established in 1962 and headquartered in Peabody, Massachusetts, serves as a supplier specializing in electron microscopes, ion beam instruments, mass spectrometers, and NMR spectrometers. The company provides a range of products, including transmission electron microscopes (TEM), scanning electron microscopes (SEM), microprobes (EPMA) and augers, electron beam lithography (direct write and photomask), mass spectrometers (including DART and ambient ionization), and more. It also offers medical and industrial equipment for high-precision testing, measurement, and analysis in various applications, including batteries, ceramics, chemistry, energy, and environmental sectors. It is a wholly-owned subsidiary of JEOL Ltd. in Japan.
ZEISS Microscopy, established in Jena, Germany, in 1846 is a manufacturer of optics and optoelectronics used in Precision Mechanics, Binoculars, Microscopy, and Eyeglass Lenses. Their product portfolio includes precision optics, such as lenses, mirrors, and prisms, laser mirrors used in laser cutting, and medical devices, optoelectronic devices and Coatings and Thin Films. The company also provides solutions including industrial quality, microscopy research, project simulation, sample testing and product development. The company also offers customer services that include support, custom research projects and customized services.
Leica Microsystems is a developer and manufacturer of microscopes and scientific instruments for the analysis of microstructures and nanostructures. The company is a provider in compound and stereo microscopy, digital microscopy, confocal user scanning, and super-resolution microscopy with related imaging systems, electron microscopy, sample preparation, and surgical microscopy used in medical, life science, and industrial applications. The company’s services include service plans, preventative maintenance, remote care, and qualification services for ensuring compliance of Leica equipment to governmental regulations.
Gatan, Inc. is a certified ISO 9001:2015 manufacturer of instrumentation and software for the electron microscopy market, founded in 1964 and headquartered in California, USA. The company’s parent company is AMETEK, Inc., a global provider of industrial technology solutions. It is under the Electronic Instruments segment, which serves the aerospace, process, power, and industrial markets. Its product line consists of TEM and SEM products, covering all aspects of specimen preparation, imaging, and analysis. It offers direction detection cameras, electron energy loss spectrometers, scanning transmission electron microscopes, ultrasonic cutters, and 3D analysis tools.
Intertek, established in 1885 and headquartered in London, England, is a provider and supplier of quality assurance services. The company offers several services, including testing, inspection, and certification services. Its services adhere to nationally recognized standards and cater to a wide array of electric, gas, and oil-fueled products. The range of these products spans from commercial and consumer appliances to HVACR equipment and manufactured wood products. It formally ensures that all products and services of a company meet the external and internal standards.
*Including some distributors, etc.
*Including some distributors, etc.
|Number of Companies
|United States of America