How to store proteins

Proteins prefer a really cool place to be store: That's -80°C in our lab. So we've got a "fridge" which make this temperature, anther one at only -40°C and an actual fridge-like looking fridge at about 4°C. Today, we got fresh tubulin (a protein which makes up microtubules, which I am working with) from a lab on campus and we had to transport it from there on dry ice to our lab into the super cold freezer. (It felt really exciting to walk with a large styrofoam box around campus carrying the tubulin ;))

When I arrived in our lab, I couldn't simply put the tubulin into a small container and then into the fridge. I froze the container first (paper box below) and had to freeze smaller Eppendorf tubes (small tubes in the picture below) to make sure the tubulin does not thaw when I transfer it. Any thawing makes the tubulin less good at polymerization so we try to avoid it.

Some tubulin arrived in tiny spheres and I had to shift these -80°C cold spheres into new containers which are also super cold. I had to take a break during the procedure to feel my finger tips again ;)