Barcelona City Council | Capital humàBarcelona City Council website

Home  > Job profiles

Get to know this occupation


X-ray crystallography is the main method of acquiring structural information in the study of proteins and other organic macromolecules (for example, the double DNA helix). The analysis of complex molecules, especially those with little symmetry, requires the use of powerful computers to adjust the diffraction pattern to the possible structures.

The Protein Data Bank (PDB) is a 3D database on the structure of proteins and nucleic acids. These data, in general obtained by x-ray crystallography and nuclear magnetic resonance, are sent by biologists and biochemists from all over the world. They are in the public domain (free use and consultation).

The crystallography technician is the person in charge of using these technologies for research.


  • Supervise protein expression, purification and crystallization.
  • Perform enzyme activity testing and inhibition studies using established or new protocols.
  • Collect diffraction data from the different technological platforms used.
  • As an expert in a technological platform, aid users in the use of the different crystallization and x-ray diffraction devices.
  • Know crystallographic technologies for protein identification, separation and synthesis.
  • Be up-to-date with all new crystallographic technologies.
  • Know and use databases of known proteins.
  • Perform maintenance and calibration of crystallization and diffraction units, the X-ray generator and liquid nitrogen freezing systems.
  • Calibrate the equipment used to establish confidence intervals.
  • In a service technology platform, attend to and advise users of the services provided and instruct on the terms of use and operation of the equipment of the platform.
  • Perform maintenance of the crystallization solution databases and collaborate with technical teams.
  • Participate in research projects related to crystallography and regularly report results to the people in charge.
  • Publish the results of research in specialised journals.
  • Present results at scientific conferences and similar events.
  • The service and/or research activity is often combined with teaching.

Quick access and copyright:

Centre per al desenvolupament professional Porta22

Barcelona Treball (Porta22)
Llacuna, 156-162, 08018 Barcelona

Monday to Friday from 9 to 18 h

Generalitat de Catalunya
Unió Europea FEDER
Unió Europea FSE