The collaboration of the PIs started in 2007 when Amit Singer and Yoel Shkolnisky were Gibbs Assistant Professors at Yale University and they followed the suggestion by Raphy Coifman to discuss the cryo-EM problem with Fred Sigworth. Their initial efforts to tackle the problem from a mathematical perspective were greatly enhanced in the summer of 2009 when they were awarded the research grant "Improved Algorithms for Macromolecular Structure Determination by cryo-EM and NMR" R01GM090200 from the NIH/NIGMS. This award was renewed in 2014, and supported undergraduate students, graduate students, and postdoctoral researchers at Princeton University who have been involved in the project.
Beyond the regular research activities, we have held a mini-conference on structural biology and applied mathematics in Princeton University, August 2-13, 2010. The list of speakers include the PIs A. Singer, Y. Shkolnisky, F. Sigworth, and D. Cowburn, B. Chait, R. Hadani, S. Gurevich, R. Basri, Y. Kluger, T. Funkhouser, Y. Lipman. A. Singer and R. Hadani organized two mini-symposia in the SIAM Conference on Imaging Science, Philadelphia, May 20-22, 2012: Three-Dimensional Macromolecular Structure Determination Using Cryo Electron Microscopy - Part I of II. These mini-symposiums have brought together leading cryo-EM experts such as J. Frank, P. Penczek, F. Sigworth and their lab members with applied mathematicians. X. Cheng and Z. Zhao organized three mini-symposia on cryo-EM in the SIAM Conference on Imaging Science, Albuquerque, New Mexico May 23-26, 2016: Computational Methods for Cryo-electron Microscopy Single Particle Reconstruction - Part I of III.
The results of the project were presented in peer reviewed journals as well as in numerous professional conferences, workshops and seminars. Among them are the 3D EM Gordon Research Conferences (GRC) in Les Diablerets, Switzerland, in 2012 and 2017, each including a presentation by A. Singer. The PIs would like to specially thank Professor Joachim Frank for many useful discussions over the years, for providing them with data sets for testing their algorithms, and for organizing the stimulating mini-symposiums on computational methods for three-dimensional microscopy reconstruction at nearby Columbia University.