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Experimental evidence is presented for the first time for the development and time evolution of concentration-depletion zones around protein crystals growing in microgravity and gelled on-ground experiments. Crystal motion and buoyancy-driven fluid movements as a result of residual accelerations and g-jitters are demonstrated to have an adverse effect on the stability of these depletion zones, provoking the breakdown of their radial symmetry. These findings may explain some of the controversial results reported on the quality of single crystals grown under microgravity in previous space missions.

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