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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/R030030/1
Title: A Coordinated Infrastructure for NMR in the Physical and Life Sciences: A 1 GHz Spectrometer at Birmingham
Principal Investigator: Carlomagno, Professor T
Other Investigators:
Knowles, Dr TJ Whittaker, Dr S Henderson, Professor I
Jeeves, Dr M Tennant, Professor DA Vuister, Professor G W
Ludwig, Dr C Willcox, Professor BE Young, Dr SP
Peet, Professor AC
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Institute of Cancer and Genomic Sciences
Organisation: University of Birmingham
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 May 2018 Ends: 31 March 2024 Value (£): 6,558,752
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Analytical Science Chemical Biology
Drug Formulation & Delivery Protein chemistry
Structural biology
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Healthcare Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
29 Nov 2017 High-Field NMR for Physical and Life Sciences Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
Birmingham houses and supports the Henry Wellcome Building for Biomolecular NMR (HWB-NMR), which since 2004 has provided a durable, state-of-the-art NMR service at 600, 800 and 900MHz for UK users. With support of the Wellcome Trust, the facility offers 70% of its available high-field NMR time free of charge to external users with high-quality projects and has expert support staff in place. HWB-NMR has hosted >50 research groups from laboratories across the UK, thus assuring UK leadership in ultra-high-field NMR and has regularly been part of EU access networks.

The popularity and importance of this facility for the UK NMR community is well evidenced by recent reviews, which qualified its services as "the vital scientific resource in UK" and "an excellent national facility which is clearly heavily used"; the Wellcome Trust renewed funding of the HWB-NMR operations for the period 2018-2023.

HWB-NMR proposes the addition of a 1GHz spectrometer, that will provide UK users with a unique line-up of NMR instruments covering 600, 800, 900MHz and 1GHz spectrometers, primarily for biomedical applications. By providing these services at one location, and with the combined support of research councils and the Wellcome Trust, a unique resource will be created that will put the UK NMR community at the forefront of NMR research, both nationally and internationally.

Specific services in Birmingham will include tracer-based and real-time metabolism, for which we will offer access to micro-cryoprobes at 600, 800MHz and 1GHz for ultimate mass sensitivity and will develop NMR methods that facilitate this line of research.

By forming a strategic alliance with the structural biology research at the University of Leicester (Prof Geerten Vuister, to be appointed as liaising visiting professor) we will also be able to offer specific expertise in NMR methodology, both in NMR pulse sequences and computational aspects (BBSRC funded), drug discovery and NMR software development via the CCPN project (MRC funded). With CCPNs 28 national and international partners and its extensive outreach programme, the 1GHz spectrometer will be firmly embedded in the NMR community. University-provided research support will particularly focus on methodology developments that benefit from the unique range of NMR instrumentation at HWB-NMR.

The direct interactions between Birmingham and Leicester in highly advanced NMR technology also aim to further strengthen their existing efforts in equipment and expertise sharing, as exemplified by the recent successful establishment of a shared cryo-EM facility across the Midlands universities. Jointly, the NMR and EM techniques contribute to the goal of integrated structural biology approaches for studying the molecular mechanisms that underpin both normal and aberrant cellular functioning.

Key Findings
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Potential use in non-academic contexts
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Date Materialised
Sectors submitted by the Researcher
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Project URL:  
Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.bham.ac.uk