The Center for Structural Biology is a part of the Center for Biophysical Sciences and Engineering located on the campus of the University of Alabama at Birmingham


The Center for Structural Biology (CSB) includes a multidisciplinary group of researchers all focused on the structure/function relationships for biomolecules involved in fundamental processes, the elucidation of mechanisms behind infectious and chronic diseases and the pursuit of structural information to support the development of novel pharmaceuticals.  The CSB is recognized as a University Wide Interdisciplinary Research Center, A UAB Core Facility for structural biology disciplines and directs the X-ray Crystallography Shared Facility for the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center.

The CSB mission is to support UAB faculty (currently across 8 schools), undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate students whose research will benefit from 1) the academic pursuit of structure/function relationships for biological macromolecules, 2) the utilization of structure-based methodologies for drug discovery initiatives 3) acquisition and/or development of new structural biology technologies and 4) coordination between the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) and Graduate Biomedical Sciences (GBS) Biochemistry, Structural and Stem Cell Biology programs. The CSB will support collaborative extramural multi-investigator and individual research programs, provide student training in structural biology and engage in educational outreach initiatives.

Facility Description

Access to major facilities/capabilities include Protein Crystallization, BioCalorimetry, X-ray Crystallography, High-field NMR Spectroscopy, Cryo-Electron Microscopy, Mass Spectrometry, Analytical Ultracentrifugation and Computational Modeling. Details for each facility are provided via the Services and and Facilites link at the top of this page.

Research Information

A common theme of the structural biology faculty members is recognition of the central importance of obtaining and utilizing structural information to understand biological function at the molecular level. Systems under study include proteins involved in immune response, ion and metabolite transport, cell-cell recognition, multi-drug-resistance, virus-host interactions, signal transduction, protein folding, protein-nucleic acid interactions and more. Current drug development programs focus on cancer, infectious diseases, parkinson's disease, cystic fibrosis, cardiovascular disease, bacterial infections, diabetes and immune response.  The CSB has extensive expertise in structure determination of both aqueous and membrane proteins, large macromolecular complexes and whole viruses. Detailed descriptions of individual research projects can be found by clicking on the faculty link at the top of this page.