Network for Advanced NMR

NMRFAM is working with our partners at the University of Georgia CCRC NMR facility and the University of Connecticut Health Sciences to build the Network for Advanced NMR (NAN). The mission of NAN is to expand the accessibility and use of state-of-the-art NMR instruments in the US. Construction of NAN includes acquisition of two 1.1 GHz NMR spectrometers, one dedicated to the study of solids at the University of Wisconsin-Madison; and one dedicated to the study of solutions at the University of Georgia. The unprecedented sensitivity and resolution of 1.1 GHz NMR spectrometers will enable advances in structural biology, metabolomics, biomolecular dynamics, materials science, chemistry and engineering.

An online NAN Portal developed at the University of Connecticut will provide access to the NAN Resource Connector and Data Archive. The Resource Connector will enable users to view and search the instrumentation and expertise available at network facilities. The goal is to facilitate access and ensure optimal use of NMR resources, lower barriers to discovery and connect NMR experts with non-experts wishing to use NMR to solve an experimental problem. Tools implemented in the portal will enable other NMR facilities to enhance their training and research infrastructure, data stewardship, and adherence to FAIR principles. Data acquired on network instruments will be automatically transferred to the NAN Data Archive, an archive for raw NMR data of all types. Users will be able to easily able to view and search their own data and data that has been made publicly available. The NAN Data Archive will link directly to NMRBox, BMRB, and other public repositories for ease of data processing and deposition.

Knowledgebases are being contructed in four application areas: Solution Structural Biology, Metabolomics, Biological Solid-State NMR and Material Science. These knowledgebases include highly curated “data sets” that will be publicly available in the Data Archive and include optimized pulse sequences and parameter sets, sample data, data processing scripts, standard operating procedures, and sample preparation requirements and protocols. The goal is to establish best-practices for sample preparation, experiment implementation and data acquisition and improve the rigor and reproducibility of NMR data by linking protocols, NMR data, and experimental metadata. In addition, webpages and decision trees will explain the unique strengths of NMR for investigating molecular structure, motion, and interactions, guide novice users to relevant content in the portal, introduce standard workflows for different applications, and provide guidance on the utility and feasibility of NMR for different types of scientific questions. NAN will have significant broader impacts by providing a mechanism that currently does not exist for non-NMR experts to find and use the most appropriate shared NMR instrument and protocols for their specific application.