Benjin, X. & Ling, L. Developments, applications, and prospects of cryo-electron microscopy. Protein science, 2019, 1-11
Cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) is a structural biological method that is used to determine the 3D structures of biomacromolecules. After years of development, cryo-EM has made great achievements, which has led to a revolution in structural biology. In this article, the principle, characteristics, history, current situation, workflow, and common problems of cryo-EM are systematically reviewed. In addition, the new development direction of cryo-EM-cryo-electron tomography (cryo-ET), is discussed in detail. Also, cryo-EM is prospected from the following aspects: the structural analysis of small proteins, the improvement of resolution and efficiency, and the relationship between cryo-EM and drug development. This review is dedicated to giving readers a comprehensive understanding of the development and application of cryo-EM, and to bringing them new insights.