Automated systematic evaluation of cryo-EM specimens with SmartScope.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Finding the conditions to stabilize a macromolecular target for imaging remains the most critical barrier to determining its structure by cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM). While automation has significantly increased the speed of data collection, specimens are still screened manually, a laborious and subjective task that often determines the success of a project. Here, we present SmartScope, the first framework to streamline, standardize, and automate specimen evaluation in cryo-EM. SmartScope employs deep-learning-based object detection to identify and classify features suitable for imaging, allowing it to perform thorough specimen screening in a fully automated manner. A web interface provides remote control over the automated operation of the microscope in real time and access to images and annotation tools. Manual annotations can be used to re-train the feature recognition models, leading to improvements in performance. Our automated tool for systematic evaluation of specimens streamlines structure determination and lowers the barrier of adoption for cryo-EM.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Bouvette, J; Huang, Q; Riccio, AA; Copeland, WC; Bartesaghi, A; Borgnia, MJ

Published Date

  • August 23, 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 11 /

PubMed ID

  • 35997703

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC9398423

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2050-084X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.7554/eLife.80047


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England