Newsletter Mar 2020


  • Due to recent support generously contributed from our funding units (LSA, LSI, COP, and Med), BioNMR core is no longer charging users from University of Michigan for consultation time. However, we will continue to log the time that we spend with each user as a way of demonstrating service to users in the different units.
  • Faculty and graduate student recruitment season is continuing, so users should be aware that tour groups will be in instrument spaces.
  • The 600 MHz NMR in 3214A LSI will be completely upgraded to Prodigy cryo-probe with NEO console during April 2020.  This will significantly upgrade the capability, sensitivity, and throughput of this instrument for our users. Delivery and preparation for the install will happen during the last week of March 2020. We expect this instrument to be down Mar 23rd – April 20th 2020, so please plan experiments accordingly.
  • The University of Michigan‘s Biosciences Initiative Core Lab program recently funded a complete renovation of the Varian 600 MHz NMR 600 in 1047 Chemistry.  Read more here. The existing magnet will be converted to a Bruker instrument with a NEO console and the latest helium cooled TCI CryoProbe. As a result, this instrument will have similar capabilities and the same software as the 800 MHz instrument, facilitating usage across instruments and increasing availability. Down time for this install is anticipated in Aug 2020.
  • The BioNMR core has a new program to provide instrument time for junior faculty collecting preliminary NMR data for external grant proposals. Supported by the College of Literature, Sciences and Arts; Life Sciences Institute; College of Pharmacy; and the Medical School, application details are below.    

BioNMR core’s Exploration Funds

BioNMR core’s exploration funds will be used to provide NMR instrument time to UM junior faculty (research assistant professors and assistant professors) who need to collect preliminary data for new external grant applications. The application ( requires:

  • Qualifications of the investigator(s): Assistant professor / research assistant professor
  • Objectives and scientific/technical significance of the proposed project (1-2 paragraphs)
  • Riskiness/feasibility of methods employed
  • Details of the NMR experiments proposed (e.g. list of experiments) ~1 paragraph
  • Suitability of the methods employed
  • Amount of NMR time and instrument requested to carry out proposed projects

Applications will be reviewed by BioNMR core staff and evaluated by the BioNMR advisory committee on a quarterly basis.

Upcoming NMR Conferences

NMRlib 2.0 : IBS pulse sequence tools for Bruker spectrometers available on NMR 800

The NMRlib package contains a suite of jython-based tools designed for Bruker spectrometers (TopSpin versions 3.2–4.0) that allow easy setup, management, and exchange of NMR experiments. A NMR experiment can be set up and executed in a few clicks by navigating through the NMRlib GUI tree structure, without any further parameter adjustment. We now have working versions of all sequences mentioned in the latest paper A Favier and B Brutscher. NMRlib: user-friendly pulse sequence tools for Bruker NMR spectrometers (2019) J Biomol NMR. 73(5), 199-211. (details: Please contact BioNMR core staff to get help with setting up these experiments.

NMR Technique Highlight: A better isotopically labeled NMR Sample preparation protocol

The authors here present a modified minimal medium and a simple protocol that can increase the protein yield up to fourfold in a pH-stabilized LB medium and up to seven-fold in a modified M9+ medium. Details of the paper can be found in the link below:Cai M., Huang Y., Craigie R., Clore G.M. A simple protocol for expression of isotope-labeled proteins in Escherichia coli grown in shaker flasks at high cell density (2019) J Biomol NMR.

BioNMR core acknowledgement in scientific publications

A reminder to all users of BioNMR core facility users, please acknowledge the BioNMR core facility for all publications that use data collected in our facility.

Research reported in this publication was supported by the University of Michigan BioNMR Core Facility (U-M BioNMR). U-M BioNMR Core is grateful for support from U-M including the College of Literature, Sciences and Arts, Life Sciences Institute, College of Pharmacy and the Medical School along with the U-M Biosciences Initiative. 

This helps us to keep track of our facility usage that leads to publications and justification for securing future funding for instrument upgrades

BioNMR core receives Biosciences Initiative Award to upgrade 600 MHz spectrometer housed in 1047 Chemistry

The University of Michigan‘s Biosciences Initiative has funded the upgrade of this instrument via the Biosciences Core Lab Funding Program read more: here. This will be updated to the latest helium cooled TCI CryoProbe with NEO console offered by Bruker Biospin

The BioNMR core assumed operations of three older NMR instruments, including a Varian 600 MHz instrument. As Varian is no longer in business, parts are more and more difficult to find and the instrument and software are no longer supported.  In order to overcome this, our proposal to Biosciences Core Lab Funding program was to reuse the newer Varian magnet at the core of this instrument and replace the console, probe, and control units to transition this to a Bruker instrument, currently the only other practical supplier of such instruments. This would ensure long-term instrument availability for the U-M research community while being a good steward of prior investment.

BioNMR core facility has been selected as one of the awardees of the Biosciences Core Lab Funding program and has been granted funds to update/upgrade the Agilent/Varian 600 MHz spectrometer with cryo-probe located in 1047 chemistry to the latest Helium cooled TCI CryoProbe, along with NEO console by Bruker. The accompanying software with this console will be Topspin 4, which can take advantage of the latest capabilities of the NEO console. In order to handle multiple samples along with automation in ICON interface, we will be equipping this instrument with Bruker’s SampleJet sample handling system. This upgrade is in the works and we will post updates as we get delivery updates from Bruker.

BioNMR core’s 600 MHz spectrometer housed in 3214 LSI building is getting an upgrade in the coming months

The University of Michigan‘s Biosciences Initiative has funded the upgrade of 600 MHz instrument via the Biosciences Research Initiative Program awarded to Natural Products Discovery Core read more: here. This will be updated to the latest nitrogen cooled Prodigy CryoProbe with NEO console offered by Bruker Biospin

In 2018, Drs. David H. Sherman and Ashootosh Tripathi (part of Natural Products Discovery Core) received funding from the Biosciences Research Initiative Program to upgrade the room temperature broadband probe connected to 600 MHz NMR spectrometer to Bruker’s latest nitrogen cooled Prodigy CryoProbe with NEO console and 24 SampleCase sample handling system.

The Prodigy CryoProbe will be ideal for routine small molecule NMR experiments, with broadband technology that covers large number of nuclei and 2-3x boost to signal as compared to room temperature probes. The ICON automation interface allows users to setup multiple experiments across many samples, and current users will be retrained to use this interface in order to use this spectrometer. This upgrade is in the works and delivery of the components from Bruker are scheduled for March/April 2020. During the upgrade users will be redirected to use the BioNMR core instruments in chemistry building.