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During coherent X-ray diffraction measurements on crystals of ferritin at room temperature using monochromatic undulator radiation from the Advanced Photon Source, a sudden lattice contraction was observed following a characteristic latent period and ultimately leading to the collapse of the crystal. The progression of this collapse is analysed using a two-state Hendricks-Teller model. It reveals that 55% of the layers collapse by 1.6% before the crystal completely stops diffracting.

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