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Issue 3, 2018
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In-cell NMR: from metabolites to macromolecules

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In-cell NMR of macromolecules has gained momentum over the last ten years as an approach that might bridge the branches of cell biology and structural biology. In this review, we put it in the context of earlier efforts that aimed to characterize by NMR the cellular environment of live cells and their intracellular metabolites. Although technical aspects distinguish these earlier in vivo NMR studies and the more recent in cell NMR efforts to characterize macromolecules in a cellular environment, we believe that both share major concerns ranging from sensitivity and line broadening to cell viability. Approaches to overcome the limitations in one subfield thereby can serve the other one and vice versa. The relevance in biomedical sciences might stretch from the direct following of drug metabolism in the cell to the observation of target binding, and thereby encompasses in-cell NMR both of metabolites and macromolecules. We underline the efforts of the field to move to novel biological insights by some selected examples.

Graphical abstract: In-cell NMR: from metabolites to macromolecules

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The article was received on 03 Oct 2017, accepted on 07 Jan 2018 and first published on 15 Jan 2018

Article type: Critical Review
DOI: 10.1039/C7AN01635B
Analyst, 2018,143, 620-629

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    In-cell NMR: from metabolites to macromolecules

    G. Lippens, E. Cahoreau, P. Millard, C. Charlier, J. Lopez, X. Hanoulle and J. C. Portais, Analyst, 2018, 143, 620
    DOI: 10.1039/C7AN01635B

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