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Wladek Minor
crystallography macromolecules structural biology

1. Introduction

Władysław Minor also known as Wladek Minor (born 1946) is a Polish-American biophysicist, a specialist in structural biology and protein crystallography. He is a Harrison Distinguished Professor of Molecular Physiology and Biological Physics at the University of Virginia.[1] Minor is a co-author of HKL2000/HKL3000 – crystallographic data processing and structure solution software used to process data and solve structures of macromolecules, as well as small molecules.[2][3] He is a co-founder of HKL Research, a company that distributes the software. He is also a co-author of a public repository of diffraction images ( for some of the protein structures available in the Protein Data Bank and other software tools for structural biology.

2. Early Life and Education

Władysław Minor was born in Poland in May of 1946. He obtained his M.Sc. degree in 1969 (supervisor - Bronisław Buras) and his Ph.D. degree in 1977 (supervisor - Izabela Sosnowska) from the Physics Department at the University of Warsaw.[4] He moved to the United States in 1985 at the age of 39.[4]

3. Career and Research

Minor's main focus of interest during the Ph.D. studies was solid-state physics. For several years after receiving his Ph.D from the University of Warsaw, he continued to work in this area of research.

After moving to the United States in 1985 and working with Michael Rossmann at Purdue University, he gradually switched into the field of macromolecular crystallography.[4] While at Purdue, Minor started a collaboration with Zbyszek Otwinowski (pl), with whom they developed software for processing X-ray diffraction data (Denzo, Scalepack, XDisplayF). Their paper “Processing of X-ray diffraction data collected in oscillation mode” published in 1997 [2] was listed as number 23 in the list of 100 most-cited research papers of all times.[5] As of 2021, this paper has been cited over 41000 times (according to Google Scholar).[6]

In 1995, Minor joined the University of Virginia as a faculty member. Around the same time, he and Zbyszek Otwinowski founded HKL Research.

Starting from 2000, his lab was a part of two Protein Structure Initiative centers: the Midwest Center for Structural Genomic (MSCG)[7] and the New York Structural Genomics Research Consortium (NYSGRC).[8] The lab was also a part of the Center for Structural Genomics of Infectious Diseases (CSGID)[9] and the Enzyme Function Initiative. The Minor lab developed and maintained data management and structure solution tools, as well as performed quality control of the crystal structures and conducted determination of some of the structures.[4]

The Minor lab has developed many other software tools for structural biology, including (a public repository of diffraction images),[10] CMM (a server for validation of metal-binding sites in macromolecular structures),[11] CheckMyBlob (a machine learning system that automatically detects and validates ligands in X-ray electron density map),[12] and LabDB (a laboratory information management system for structural biology).[13]

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Wladek Minor became involved in the improvement of SARS-Cov-2 macromolecular crystal structures[14] and published several scientific publications on the subject,[15][16][17] as well as a publication on molecular determinants of vascular transport of dexamethasone in COVID-19 therapy.[18] His research on COVID-19 has been reported by multiple media outlets.[19][20][21][22]

Minor's lab has produced over 240 scientific publications and over 450 crystal structures of proteins.[23] As of 2021, his papers were cited over 55000 times (according to Google Scholar).[6]

4. Awards and Honors

  • The Tadeusz Sendzimir Applied Sciences Award – 2020[24]
  • Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science – 2018[25][26]
  • Fellow of the American Crystallographic Association – 2018[27]
  • American Friends of UW joint award - University of Warsaw - 2018[28]
  • Inventor of the Year Award - University of Virginia - 2007[29] [30]

5. Personal Life

Wladek Minor is married to Iwona Minor. They have two sons.[4]

Further Reading
In this part, we encourage you to list the link of papers wrote by the character, or published reviews/articles about his/her academic contributions. Edit


  1. "Minor, Wladek". 
  2. Otwinowski, Zbyszek; Minor, Wladek (January 1, 1997). "[20 Processing of X-ray diffraction data collected in oscillation mode"]. Methods in Enzymology 276: 307–326. doi:10.1016/S0076-6879(97)76066-X. ISBN 9780121821777. PMID 27799103. 
  3. Minor, W.; Cymborowski, M.; Otwinowski, Z.; Chruszcz, M. (August 1, 2006). "HKL-3000: the integration of data reduction and structure solution – from diffraction images to an initial model in minutes". Acta Crystallographica Section D: Biological Crystallography 62 (8): 859–866. doi:10.1107/S0907444906019949. PMID 16855301. 
  4. Jaskolski, Mariusz; Wlodawer, Alexander; Dauter, Zbigniew; Shabalin, Ivan; Chruszcz, Maksymilian (January 21, 2021). "Celebrating the 75th birthday of Professor Wladek Minor, one of the most accomplished Polish-American structural biologists". Acta Biochimica Polonica 68 (1): 1–4. doi:10.18388/abp.2020_5539. PMID 33476109. 
  5. "The top 100 papers". 
  6. Wladek Minor publications indexed by Google Scholar)
  7. "Midwest Center for Structural Genomics | Argonne National Laboratory". 
  8. "NYSGRC". 
  9. "Center for Structural Genomics of Infectious Diseases". 
  10. Grabowski, M.; Langner, K. M.; Cymborowski, M.; Porebski, P. J.; Sroka, P.; Zheng, H.; Cooper, D. R.; Zimmerman, M. D. et al. (November 1, 2016). "A public database of macromolecular diffraction experiments". Acta Crystallographica Section D: Structural Biology 72 (11): 1181–1193. doi:10.1107/S2059798316014716. PMID 27841751. PMC 5108346. 
  11. Zheng, H.; Cooper, D. R.; Porebski, P. J.; Shabalin, I. G.; Handing, K. B.; Minor, W. (March 1, 2017). "CheckMyMetal: a macromolecular metal-binding validation tool". Acta Crystallographica Section D: Structural Biology 73 (3): 223–233. doi:10.1107/S2059798317001061. PMID 28291757. 
  12. Kowiel, Marcin; Brzezinski, Dariusz; Porebski, Przemyslaw J; Shabalin, Ivan G; Jaskolski, Mariusz; Minor, Wladek (February 1, 2019). "Automatic recognition of ligands in electron density by machine learning". Bioinformatics 35 (3): 452–461. doi:10.1093/bioinformatics/bty626. PMID 30016407. PMC 6361236. 
  13. Cooper, David R.; Grabowski, Marek; Zimmerman, Matthew D.; Porebski, Przemyslaw J.; Shabalin, Ivan G.; Woinska, Magdalena; Domagalski, Marcin J.; Zheng, Heping et al. (April 21, 2021). Structural Genomics: General Applications. Methods in Molecular Biology. 2199. Springer US. pp. 209–236. doi:10.1007/978-1-0716-0892-0_13. 
  15. Grabowski, M.; Macnar, J. M.; Cymborowski, M.; Cooper, D. R.; Shabalin, I. G.; Gilski, M.; Brzezinski, D.; Kowiel, M. et al. (2021). "Rapid response to emerging biomedical challenges and threats". IUCrJ 8 (3). doi:10.1107/S2052252521003018. 
  16. Brzezinski, Dariusz; Kowiel, Marcin; Cooper, David R.; Cymborowski, Marcin; Grabowski, Marek; Wlodawer, Alexander; Dauter, Zbigniew; Shabalin, Ivan G. et al. (April 20, 2021). " A web resource for SARS-CoV-2-related structural models". Protein Science 30 (1): 115–124. doi:10.1002/pro.3959. PMID 32981130. PMC 7537053. 
  17. Wlodawer, Alexander; Dauter, Zbigniew; Shabalin, Ivan G.; Gilski, Miroslaw; Brzezinski, Dariusz; Kowiel, Marcin; Minor, Wladek; Rupp, Bernhard et al. (April 20, 2020). "Ligand-centered assessment of SARS-CoV-2 drug target models in the Protein Data Bank". The FEBS Journal 287 (17): 3703–3718. doi:10.1111/febs.15366. PMID 32418327. PMC 7276724. 
  18. Shabalin, I. G.; Czub, M. P.; Majorek, K. A.; Brzezinski, D.; Grabowski, M.; Cooper, D. R.; Panasiuk, M.; Chruszcz, M. et al. (November 1, 2020). "Molecular determinants of vascular transport of dexamethasone in COVID-19 therapy". IUCrJ 7 (6): 1048–1058. doi:10.1107/S2052252520012944. PMID 33063792. PMC 7553145. 
  19. "UVa researcher says central information system needed before next pandemic". 
  20. "Coronavirus caught us all off guard. Can we prevent a future pandemic?". 
  21. "Research finds conditions like diabetes may impact effectiveness of COVID-19 treatment". 
  22. "Working to understand protein structures in COVID-19". 
  23. "Minor Laboratory". 
  24. "2020 PIASA Awards Announcements" (in en). 
  26. "Elected Fellows". 
  27. "Fellows of the American Crystallographic Association" (in en). 
  28. "Prof. Władek Minor laureatem nagrody UW-AFUW 2018" (in PL). 
  29. "UVa's inventor award goes to physicist Minor". 
Name: Wladek Minor
Born: May 1956
Title: Biophysicist
Affiliation: Unknown
Honors: Fellow of the American Crystallographic Association – 2018 Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science – 2018
Subjects: Others
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