Zbigniew Dauter, Ph.D.

Senior Investigator

Macromolecular Crystallography Laboratory


Bldg. 202, Rm. Q142
Argonne, IL 60439



Research Topics

The Synchrotron Radiation Research Section is located at the Argonne National Laboratory near Chicago, Illinois. The aim of the research within this Section is to utilize the unique properties of the X-ray radiation generated at synchrotron storage rings-in particular, at the Southeast Regional Collaborative Access Team (SERCAT) beamlines of the Advanced Photon Source (APS).

The two most important characteristics of synchrotron radiation are the high intensity of the X-ray beam and the tunability of the wavelength; both of these properties are utilized in the research investigations within the Section. The SERCAT beamlines (based on the undulator and the bending magnet) are easily tunable within the wavelength range from beyond the bromine absorption edge to long wavelengths, and successful MAD experiments have been performed on such anomalous scatterers as bromine, selenium, mercury, platinum, zinc, holmium, and iron. On the other hand, long wavelengths permit us to utilize the very weak anomalous signal of lighter elements, such as sulfur and phosphorus, naturally existing in proteins and nucleic acids. Several atomic-resolution diffraction data sets extending to ultra-high resolution (beyond 0.8 angstrom) have been collected and used for precise model refinements.

In addition to conducting research investigations, the Section personnel provide technological and scientific support for NIH researchers collecting diffraction data at APS. The NIH Intramural Synchrotron Consortium of macromolecular crystallographers is a part of SERCAT and uses about 20% of the total available time at SERCAT beamlines. Collecting diffraction data at the synchrotron beamline involves a very high level of technology--but it is a scientific process, not a technicality. Therefore, a proper selection of all the necessary parameters can be done only if based on scientific considerations.


Dr. Dauter earned his Ph.D. in Crystallography from the Technical University of Gdansk in 1975 under the direction of Professor Z. Kosturkiewicz. From 1975 to 1997, he conducted research in structural crystallography at the University of York, European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Hamburg, and Technical University of Gdansk. He established the Synchrotron Radiation Research Section at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) in late 1997, and joined the Macromolecular Crystallography Laboratory, NCI, as a Section Chief in 2000. His laboratory was relocated from BNL to Argonne National Laboratory at the end of 2004.

Selected Publications

  1. Rajashankar K, Dauter Z. Data collection for crystallographic structure determination. Methods Mol Biol. 2014;1140:211-37.

  2. Brzezinski K, Brzuszkiewicz A, Dauter M, Kubicki M, Jaskolski M, Dauter Z. High regularity of Z-DNA revealed by ultra high-resolution crystal structure at 0.55 A. Nucleic Acids Res. 2011;39(14):6238-48.

  3. Jedrzejczak R, Wang J, Dauter M, Szczesny RJ, Stepien PP, Dauter Z. Human Suv3 protein reveals unique features among SF2 helicases. Acta Crystallogr D Biol Crystallogr. 2011;67(Pt 11):988-96.

  4. Brzozowski AM, Pike AC, Dauter Z, Hubbard RE, Bonn T, Engström O, Ohman L, Greene GL, Gustafsson JA, Carlquist M. Molecular basis of agonism and antagonism in the oestrogen receptor. Nature. 1997;389(6652):753-8.

  5. Wang J, Dauter M, Alkire R, Joachimiak A, Dauter Z. Triclinic lysozyme at 0.65 A resolution. Acta Crystallogr D Biol Crystallogr. 2007;63(Pt 12):1254-68.

This page was last updated on September 17th, 2019