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Application of atomic force microscopy to studies of surface processes in virus crystallization and structural biology.


Atomic force microscopy (AFM) investigation revealed the sources of disorder and mechanisms of their formation in crystals of an icosahedral plant virus, Cucumber Mosaic Virus (CMV) and structure of the Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV-1). The combination of defects and local disorder in CMV crystals presented here are likely the physical bases for mosaicity in virus crystals, and may be largely responsible for their limited diffraction resolution. High-resolution images of intact, enveloped HSV-1 and the underlying capsid structure demonstrate capabilities of AFM to probe structures of large macromolecular assemblies.

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