Berkeley Lab Study Reveals Key Details in Formation of S-layer Nanosheets
Imagine thousands of copies of a single protein organizing into a coat of chainmail armor that protects the wearer from harsh and ever-changing environmental conditions. That is the case for many microorganisms. In a new study, researchers with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have uncovered key details in this natural process that can be used for the self-assembly of nanomaterials into complex two- and three-dimensional structures.
Caroline Ajo-Franklin, a chemist and synthetic biologist at Berkeley Lab’s Molecular Foundry, led this study in which high-throughput light scattering measurements were used to investigate the self-assembly of 2D nanosheets from a common bacterial surface layer (S-layer) protein. This protein, called “SbpA,” forms the protective armor for Lysinibacillus sphaericus, a soil bacterium used as a toxin to control mosquitoes. Their investigation revealed that calcium ions play a key role in how this armor assembles. Two key roles actually.
“Calcium ions not only trigger the folding of the protein into the correct shape for nanosheet formation, but also serve to bind the nanosheets together,” Ajo-Franklin says. “By establishing and using light scattering as a proxy for SbpA nanosheet formation, we were able to determine how varying the concentrations of calcium ions and SbpA affects the size and shape of the S-layer armor.”
Details on this study have been published in the journal ACS Nano in a paper titled “Ion-Specific Control of the Self-Assembly Dynamics of a Nanostructured Protein Lattice.” Ajo-Franklin is the corresponding author. Co-authors are Behzad Rad, Thomas Haxton, Albert Shon, Seong-Ho Shin and Stephen Whitelam.
In the microbial world of bacteria and archaea, external threats abound. Their surrounding environment can transition from extreme heat to extreme cold, or from highly acidic to highly basic. Predators are everywhere. To protect themselves, many bacteria and archaea encase themselves within a shell of S-layer proteins. While scientists have known about this protective coating for many years, how it forms has been a mystery.
Ajo-Franklin and her colleagues have been exploring self-assembling proteins as a potential means of creating nanostructures with complex structure and function.
“At the Molecular Foundry, we’ve gotten really good at making nanomaterials into different shapes but we are still learning how to assemble these materials into organized structures,” she says. “S-layer proteins are abundant biological proteins known to self-assemble into 2D crystalline nanosheets with lattice symmetries and pore sizes that are about the same dimensions as quantum dots and nanotubes. This makes them a compelling model system for the creation of nanostructured arrays of organic and inorganic materials in a bottom-up fashion.”
The Latest on: Self-Assembling Nanostructures
via Google News
The Latest on: Self-Assembling Nanostructures
- Nanomedicine Strategies for Hematological Malignancies: What Is Next?on January 20, 2021 at 4:00 pm
self-assembling, biodegradable; ease of functional modification; targeting potential Doxorubicin AML Micelle+Pluronic block copolymers SP1049C (Supratek Pharma, Montreal, Canada) Suitable carrier ...
- Nanodevices Self-Assemble Using DNAon January 12, 2021 at 3:59 pm
Though many of those efforts have used carbon nanotubes, Harvard University's Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering has harnessed DNA to create self-assembling nanodevices ... of DNA to ...
- New One-Step Process Helps Create Tunable, Self-Assembled Metamaterialson January 12, 2021 at 7:33 am
The researchers’ results demonstrate the true possibility of developing analogous self-assembled structures with the ability to produce “built-to-order” nanostructures for extensive applications in ...
- ASU humanities institute hosts 'Hope and Empowerment' serieson December 14, 2020 at 4:00 pm
The “Scholarly Series on Hope and Empowerment” featured three scholars whose lectures revealed how personal challenges, triumphs and backgrounds can become an integral part of change-making ...
- A biocompatible supramolecular hydrogel with multivalenton September 11, 2020 at 3:59 pm
(B) TEM image of the nanostructures self-assembled from SGY at the critical self-assembling concentration (583 μM). (C) TEM image of the nanostructures self- assembled from SGY at 400 μM. (D) TEM ...
- Shantanu Suron August 15, 2020 at 12:39 pm
Stupp (2014): “Post-assembly functionalization of supramolecular nanostructures with bioactive peptides ... neurite outgrowth and directed migration in monodomain gels of self-assembling, peptide ...
- Dr Mohamed Elsawyon March 5, 2020 at 8:13 pm
In Manchester, Mohamed worked on the design and development of self-assembling β-sheet forming peptide nanofibers ... the fundamentals behind peptide self-assembly into bio-inspired nanostructures for ...
- Building climate-resilient citieson February 9, 2020 at 10:03 pm
Startup Cypris of Berkeley, CA is making a paintable, transparent coating based on self-assembling polymers. These materials form nanostructures that reflect a wide spectrum of sunlight.
- Nanotechnology Research Laboratorieson December 14, 2018 at 9:03 pm
They are studying new self-assembly materials forming sub-10 nm nanostructures based on polymers and nanoparticles. Their novel self-assembling systems aim for much superior precision, reliability, ...
- Jessica M. Larsen, Ph.D.on October 8, 2018 at 5:04 am
Professor Larsen’s research is centered on biomimetic and polymeric materials for drug delivery applications in neurodegenerative disease and other brain disorders. Her current research focuses on the ...
via Bing News