NMR-MRI/S Science Highlights

14 November 2022

17O Labeling Reveals Paired Active Sites in Zeolite Catalysts

Zeolite catalysts are critical to generating the molecules that provide the building blocks of society’s energy and materials needs. Discerning a clear atomic-level picture of the active sites remains challenging for most current technologies, but here we show that solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (ssNMR) methods coupled with ultra-high magnetic field instruments, can and has provided extremely useful information for catalyst development.

15 August 2022

Finding Water Molecules with Important Biological Activity

A new 17O solid-state NMR technique, employed on the highest-field NMR spectrometer in the world (the 36 T Series Connected Hybrid), identifies water molecules in different layers of a model membrane for the first time.

17 June 2022

NMR FAIR Data: Phase-Separation Properties of an RNA-Binding Protein

Evolutionary biologists reused FAIR data generated at the MagLab's NMR facility to model an RNA-binding protein in mammals dating back 160 million years and to explore how evolution and natural selection have influenced the structure of the protein. Their work suggests new strategies for improving our understanding of this protein, which could lead to improved therapies for neurodegenerative diseases like ALS.

19 April 2022

Imaging Enzyme Active Site Chemistry Using Multiple Fields up to 35.2T

This new technique for mapping out atom placements in the active site of enzymes could unlock the potential for finding new therapeutics.

25 January 2022

Understanding How Fungi Build Their Cell Walls for Protection

Scientists have used high-field nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) to reveal how fungal pathogens use carbohydrates and proteins to build their cell walls (the protective layers outside of the cell). These findings will guide the development of novel antifungal drugs that target the cell wall molecules to combat life-threatening diseases caused by invasive fungal infections.

22 July 2021

A New Method for Understanding Dynamic Nuclear Polarization

A new method to study how the nuclei of atoms “communicate” with one another in the presence of unpaired electron spins has been developed at the MagLab. Known as hyperpolarization resurgence (HypRes), this method benefits and expands the application of a revolutionary technique known as dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP), which provides enormous signal enhancements in nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) experiments.

28 April 2021

Structure of Boron-Based Catalysts from 11B Solid-State NMR at 35.2T

Measurements performed at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory provide unique insight into molecular structure of next-generation catalysts for the production of the widely used industrial chemical, propene.

16 October 2020

Probing Metal Organic Frameworks with 17O NMR at 35.2 T

Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) are porous materials with high surface areas that can host a variety of different guest molecules, leading to applications in catalysis, drug delivery, chemical separation, fuel cells, and data storage. In order to design better MOFs, knowledge of their molecular-level structures is crucial. At the MagLab, the highest-field NMR spectrometer in the world was used to probe the complex structures of MOFs both "as built" and as they exist when other "guest" molecules are inserted inside the framework.

23 March 2020

Analytical tool for in vivo triple quantum MR signals

Magnetic resonance (MR) signals of sodium and potassium nuclei during ion binding are attracting increased attention as a potential biomarker of in vivo cell energy metabolism. This new analytical tool helps describe and visualize the results of MR experiments in the presence of in vivo ion binding.

12 December 2019

Liquid State Dynamic Nuclear Polarization at High Magnetic Field

This finding demonstrates a path forward to dramatically enhance sensitivity for molecule concentration measurement by magnetic resonance using Overhauser DNP.

29 July 2019

Ultra-high magnetic fields provide new insights into bone-like materials

Very high magnetic fields now enable researchers to understand what surrounds calcium atoms in materials.

20 March 2019

Scientists identify potential biomarker for brain diseases

With advanced techniques and world-record magnetic fields, researchers have detected new MRI signals from brain tumors.

4 January 2019

Uncovering the secrets of fungal cell walls

With unprecedented sensitivity and resolution from state-of-the-art magnets, scientists have identified for the first time the cell wall structure of one of the most prevalent and deadly fungi.

10 July 2018

Metabolic assessment of migraines using ultra-high magnetic fields

The causes of migraines are not well understood, with treatment limited to addressing pain rather than its origin. Research conducted with hydrogen MRI is attempting to identify the "migraine generator."

5 September 2017

New NMR technique could lead to better batteries

Scientists can now observe lithium moving through an electrolyte in real time.

16 June 2017

MRI illuminates link between heart disease and mood disorders

High-resolution brain imaging provides evidence of depression, anxiety in diseased mice

21 November 2016

New technique for detecting brain tumors

Scientists using an MRI-friendly oxygen isotope have demonstrated a promising and safe method for identifying cancerous tumors.

18 July 2016

"Free" oxide ions detected in silicate glasses

Using an advanced technique, scientists discover that one of the most common substances in our everyday lives — glass — is more complex than we thought.

13 April 2016

Learning how protective shells form around retroviruses

Scientists gain new insights into how protective shells form around retrovirus genomes, advancing the search for drugs that will combat them.

19 November 2015

Cell phone technology makes for versatile NMR probes

Inspired by the SIM card technology used in modern cell phones, MagLab engineers designed and built a versatile magnet probe that makes it easier and more efficient for scientists to see the structure of molecules.