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ALSNews Vol. 317 Print
Tuesday, 22 February 2011 14:50

Giant Protease TPP II's Structure, Mechanism Uncovered
Tripeptidyl peptidase II, the largest known eukaryotic protease complex, is implicated in numerous cellular processes including the degradation of the endogenous satiety agent cholecystokinin-8, making it a target in the treatment of obesity. To gain insight into this molecular machine's mechanisms of activation and proteolysis, researchers combined single-particle cryo-electron microscopy and x-ray crystallography at ALS Beamline 8.2.2. Read more...

Contact: Peter J. Walian
ALS Science Café this Friday, Feb 25

The next Science Café will be held this Friday, February 25 at noon in the User Support Building's second floor conference room. Bring your lunch and enjoy café-style snacks while listening to these speakers present their research:

  • Hendrik Ohldag - "Doesn't a magnetic pencil sound like a great idea?"
  • Elizabeth Boatman - "Fossils: Discerning fact from fiction in multi-million-year-old materials"
  • Daniel Merthe - "Nanofocusing on Beamline 5.3.1" Meeting in Washington, D.C.

The management board of, the international group of synchrotron/FEL communications and public affairs officers, met last week during the AAAS meeting in Washington, D.C., to discuss new ways to better serve the light source user communities and promote their scientific successes to the media, educators, students, and the general public. To better serve its audiences, will be sending out a brief survey at the beginning of May to assess the usage of the site and the digital and media needs of the user community. Visit and give us your feedback!

ueccornerUEC Corner
Graduate Student Forum, BES Review Coming in March

The UEC is organizing a Graduate Student Forum for graduate students at the ALS. The Forum will take place from 1-2 pm, Monday, March 21, in 15-300. Dr. Janos Kirz will present a talk on "life after graduate school." We hope this will be the first in a series of forums discussing graduate student life at the ALS. If you are a student at the ALS, please try to attend, and give us your ideas for other topics you would like to hear discussed. For more information, please contact UEC Member Holly Barth.

The Advanced Light Source's triennial review by the DOE's Office of Science, Basic Energy Sciences division will take place March 16-18, 2011. The external peer reviewers will be assessing how the ALS is run, and how well it is meeting the needs of users. The UEC will have a discussion with the reviewers. If you have concerns you would like us to raise, please communicate them to me or to another UEC member before March 15.

All users are welcome to contact their UEC representatives to raise issues of concern relating to their own research, or to alert us to issues facing our whole community.

Contact: David Osborn

opsinfoOperations Update
For the user runs from January 7 to February 6, 2011, the beam reliability [(time scheduled - time lost)/time scheduled)] was 99.3%. For this period, the mean time between failures (MTBF) was 94.9 hours, and the mean time to recovery (MTTR) was 55 minutes. There were no significant interruptions.

From January 27 through February 5, we set a new record for contiguous hours of light supplied to users -- ALS provided 191 hours of light without an unscheduled interruption.

More detailed information on reliability is available on the ALS reliability bulletin board, which is located in the hallway between the ALS and the control room in Building 80. Questions about beam reliability should be directed to Dave Richardson ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , x4376).

Long-term and weekly operations schedules are available on the Web. Requests for special operations use of the "scrubbing" shift should be sent to Rick Bloemhard ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , x4738) by 1:00 p.m. Friday. The ring status in real time can be found on the ALS home page.
In This Issue
Giant Protease TPP II's Structure, Mechanism Uncovered
ALS Science Café this Friday, Feb 25 Meeting in Washington, D.C.
Ring Leaders: User Services
Announcements: Operating Schedule in Google Calendar; Register Early for the APS April Meeting

ringleadersRing Leaders
User Services
Sue Bailey, User Services Group Leader, announces online ESSs, thanks users for their help with the BES review process, and looks toward a User Portal upgrade, in the works. Read the Article
Operating Schedule in Google Calendar
ALS users and staff can now view the current operating schedule on Google Calendar. The schedule is still available on the Web site as an image and Excel spreadsheet.

By clicking the Google Calendar link on this page, and then on "+ Google Calendar" in the lower right-hand corner, the calendar can also be added to your own Google calendar.
Register Early for the APS April Meeting
Early bird registration for the April APS Meeting closes on Febraury 25th, so register now. The meeting will take place April 30-May 3 in Anaheim, CA.
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