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Keywords:

  • crystal quality;
  • external electric fields;
  • protein crystallography;
  • crystal growth

X-ray diffraction rocking-curve measurements were performed on tetragonal hen egg white lysozyme (HEWL) crystals grown with and without application of an external alternating current (AC) electric field, and then the crystal quality was assessed by the FWHMs of each rocking-curve profile. The FWHMs for HEWL crystals grown with an external electric field were smaller than those for crystals grown without. In particular, the average FWHM for the 12 12 0 reflection with an external electric field (0.0034°) was significantly smaller than that without (0.0061°). This indicates that the crystal quality of HEWL crystals was improved by application of the external AC electric field. This crystallization technique can be expected to enhance the resolution of protein molecule structure analysis by X-ray diffraction.