Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 505895
Title Unidirectional Living Growth of Self-Assembled Protein Nanofibrils Revealed by Super-resolution Microscopy
Author(s) Beun, Lennart H.; Albertazzi, Lorenzo; Zwaag, Daan van der; Vries, Renko de; Cohen Stuart, Martien A.
Source ACS Nano 10 (2016)5. - ISSN 1936-0851 - p. 4973 - 4980.
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsnano.6b01017
Department(s) Physical Chemistry and Soft Matter
VLAG
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2016
Keyword(s) nanofibrils - protein polymers - self-assembly - STORM microscopy
Abstract

Protein-based nanofibrils are emerging as a promising class of materials that provide unique properties for applications such as biomedical and food engineering. Here, we use atomic force microscopy and stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy imaging to elucidate the growth dynamics, exchange kinetics, and polymerization mechanism for fibrils composed of a de novo designed recombinant triblock protein polymer. This macromolecule features a silk-inspired self-assembling central block composed of GAGAGAGH repeats, which are known to fold into a β roll with turns at each histidine and, once folded, to stack, forming a long, ribbon-like structure. We find several properties that allow the growth of patterned protein nanofibrils: the self-assembly takes place on only one side of the growing fibrils by the essentially irreversible addition of protein polymer subunits, and these fibril ends remain reactive indefinitely in the absence of monomer ("living ends"). Exploiting these characteristics, we can grow stable diblock protein nanofibrils by the sequential addition of differently labeled proteins. We establish control over the block length ratio by simply varying monomer feed conditions. Our results demonstrate the use of engineered protein polymers in creating precisely patterned protein nanofibrils and open perspectives for the hierarchical self-assembly of functional biomaterials.

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