Crystallization is defined as the process which occurs naturally, or can be done artificially, where solid forms of atoms or molecules are organized in a structure called crystals. Similarly, in protein crystallization, protein crystals are formed that are further used for scientific and industrial purposes, predominantly for the study of X-ray crystallography. The methods for the artificial formation of protein crystals include vapor diffusion, microbatch, micro dialysis, and free-interface diffusion. Vapor diffusion is the most common method for protein crystallization, as it allows gentle and gradual changes in protein and precipitant concentration, aiding to the growth of large and well-ordered crystals.
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The protein crystallization market is expanding at a considerable growth rate due to increasing usage of crystallization for membrane protein structure elucidation. Furthermore, there are numerous factors that are influencing the growth of crystallization of protein sample in several end user industries. These factors include protein purity, pH, concentration of protein, temperature, precipitants, and additives. High investment in R&D and technology by major pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms, technological advancements, and increase in government funding are major factors that are driving the demand for protein crystallization. New and innovative product launches by key manufacturers are also projected to drive the demand for protein crystallization in the near future. However, factors such as lack of qualified and experienced researchers and crystallizing a protein without proven protocol are likely to hamper the expansion of the market.
In terms of technology, the market can be segmented into X-ray crystallography, NMR spectroscopy, and others. An X-ray crystallography helps to achieve the whole 3D structure by the proper analysis of a good crystallize material. Hence, the segment is estimated to hold a significant share of the market share during the forecast period. It is also considered to be the most advanced method available for obtaining high-resolution structural information about biological macromolecules.
In terms of product, the market can be segmented into reagents, instruments, and others. Reagents have potential applications in protein chemistry, as they possesses hydrophobic and ionic characteristics along with the ability to bond with hydrogen. They have numerous applications and can be used as an additive, a detergent, a precipitating agent, or to deliver ligands into protein crystals. In terms of end-user, the protein crystallization market can be segmented into pharmaceutical industry, biotechnology industry, and others. Increased application of protein crystallization in material science techniques is a key driver for the biotechnology industry segment in the protein crystallization market. However, protein crystallization is also largely employed in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry for genetic engineering, protein research, protein engineering, and drug delivery processes.
Global protein crystallization market is anticipated to expand at a prominent growth rate in the next few years. The major factor attributing to this growth is the rising expansion opportunities across developing regions of the industry. Increasing usage of membrane protein, crystallization processes, and structure elucidation are additional factors that are propelling the market at an impressive growth rate.
In terms of geography, North America is anticipated to lead the global protein crystallization market. Rise in research and development expenditure by major players operating in countries of North America is anticipated to increase the demand for membrane protein structure elucidation, thereby boosting the demand for protein crystallization. Asia Pacific and Europe are anticipated to be lucrative regions for the protein crystallization market due to increasing investment opportunities for companies in these immature markets and the increased focus of pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies toward Asia as an R&D outsourcing destination. Latin America and Middle East & Africa are emerging markets for protein crystallization.
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Key players operating in the global protein crystallization market include Rigaku Corporation (Japan), Hampton Research (U.S.), Jena Bioscience GmbH (Germany), Molecular Dimensions Ltd. (U.K.), Formulatrix, Inc. (U.S.), Bruker Corporation (U.S.), and MiTeGen LLC (U.S.).