The impact of structural genomics: the first quindecennial

J Struct Funct Genomics. 2016 Mar;17(1):1-16. doi: 10.1007/s10969-016-9201-5. Epub 2016 Mar 2.


The period 2000-2015 brought the advent of high-throughput approaches to protein structure determination. With the overall funding on the order of $2 billion (in 2010 dollars), the structural genomics (SG) consortia established worldwide have developed pipelines for target selection, protein production, sample preparation, crystallization, and structure determination by X-ray crystallography and NMR. These efforts resulted in the determination of over 13,500 protein structures, mostly from unique protein families, and increased the structural coverage of the expanding protein universe. SG programs contributed over 4400 publications to the scientific literature. The NIH-funded Protein Structure Initiatives alone have produced over 2000 scientific publications, which to date have attracted more than 93,000 citations. Software and database developments that were necessary to handle high-throughput structure determination workflows have led to structures of better quality and improved integrity of the associated data. Organized and accessible data have a positive impact on the reproducibility of scientific experiments. Most of the experimental data generated by the SG centers are freely available to the community and has been utilized by scientists in various fields of research. SG projects have created, improved, streamlined, and validated many protocols for protein production and crystallization, data collection, and functional analysis, significantly benefiting biological and biomedical research.

Keywords: NMR; Protein crystallography; Structural genomics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomedical Research / methods
  • Biomedical Research / statistics & numerical data
  • Biomedical Research / trends
  • Computational Biology / methods*
  • Computational Biology / statistics & numerical data
  • Computational Biology / trends
  • Crystallography, X-Ray
  • Databases, Protein*
  • Genomics / methods*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Protein Conformation*
  • Proteins / chemistry*
  • Proteins / genetics
  • Proteins / metabolism
  • Proteomics / methods*


  • Proteins