In the anabolic synthesis of diaminopimelate and lysine in plants and in some bacteria, the enzyme L,L-diaminopimelate aminotransferase (DapL; EC 126.96.36.199) catalyzes the conversion of tetrahydrodipicolinic acid (THDPA) to L,L-diaminopimelate, bypassing the DapD, DapC and DapE enzymatic steps in the bacterial acyl pathways. Here, the cloning, expression, purification, crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction analysis of DapL from the alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii are presented. Protein crystals were grown in conditions containing 25% (w/v) PEG 3350 and 200 mM lithium sulfate and initially diffracted to ∼1.35 Å resolution. They belonged to space group P2(1)2(1)2(1), with unit-cell parameters a=58.9, b=91.8, c=162.9 Å. The data were processed to 1.55 Å resolution with an Rmerge of 0.081, an Rp.i.m. of 0.044, an Rr.i.m of 0.093 and a VM of 2.28 Å3 Da(-1).