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Sample records for artificial light-harvesting self-assemble

  1. Zinc chlorins for artificial light-harvesting self-assemble into antiparallel stacks forming a microcrystalline solid-state material

    PubMed Central

    Ganapathy, Swapna; Sengupta, Sanchita; Wawrzyniak, Piotr K.; Huber, Valerie; Buda, Francesco; Baumeister, Ute; Würthner, Frank; de Groot, Huub J. M.

    2009-01-01

    We introduce a concept to solve the structure of a microcrystalline material in the solid-state at natural abundance without access to distance constraints, using magic angle spinning (MAS) NMR spectroscopy in conjunction with X-ray powder diffraction and DFT calculations. The method is applied to a novel class of materials that form (semi)conductive 1D wires for supramolecular electronics and artificial light-harvesting. The zinc chlorins 3-devinyl-31-hydroxymethyl-132-demethoxycarbonylpheophorbide a (3′,5′-bis-dodecyloxy)benzyl ester zinc complex 1 and 3-devinyl-31-methoxymethyl-132-demethoxycarbonylpheophorbide a (3′,5′-bis-dodecyloxy)benzyl ester zinc complex 2, self-assemble into extended excitonically coupled chromophore stacks. 1H-13C heteronuclear dipolar correlation MAS NMR experiments provided the 1H resonance assignment of the chlorin rings that allowed accurate probing of ring currents related to the stacking of macrocycles. DFT ring-current shift calculations revealed that both chlorins self-assemble in antiparallel π-stacks in planar layers in the solid-state. Concomitantly, X-ray powder diffraction measurements for chlorin 2 at 80 °C revealed a 3D lattice for the mesoscale packing that matches molecular mechanics optimized aggregate models. For chlorin 2 the stacks alternate with a periodicity of 0.68 nm and a 3D unit cell with an approximate volume of 6.28 nm3 containing 4 molecules, which is consistent with space group P21221. PMID:19587237

  2. Self-assembly and energy transfer in artificial light-harvesting complexes of bacteriochlorophyll c with astaxanthin.

    PubMed

    Alster, J; Polívka, T; Arellano, J B; Hříbek, P; Vácha, F; Hála, J; Pšenčík, J

    2012-03-01

    Chlorosomes, the light-harvesting antennae of green photosynthetic bacteria, are based on large aggregates of bacteriochlorophyll molecules. Aggregates with similar properties to those in chlorosomes can also be prepared in vitro. Several agents were shown to induce aggregation of bacteriochlorophyll c in aqueous environments, including certain lipids, carotenes, and quinones. A key distinguishing feature of bacteriochlorophyll c aggregates, both in vitro and in chlorosomes, is a large (>60 nm) red shift of their Q(y) absorption band compared with that of the monomers. In this study, we investigate the self-assembly of bacteriochlorophyll c with the xanthophyll astaxanthin, which leads to the formation of a new type of complexes. Our results indicate that, due to its specific structure, astaxanthin molecules competes with bacteriochlorophylls for the bonds involved in the aggregation, thus preventing the formation of any significant red shift compared with pure bacteriochlorophyll c in aqueous buffer. A strong interaction between both the types of pigments in the developed assemblies, is manifested by a rather efficient (~40%) excitation energy transfer from astaxanthin to bacteriochlorophyll c, as revealed by fluorescence excitation spectroscopy. Results of transient absorption spectroscopy show that the energy transfer is very fast (<500 fs) and proceeds through the S(2) state of astaxanthin. PMID:21833799

  3. One-Dimensional Multichromophor Arrays Based on DNA: From Self-Assembly to Light-Harvesting.

    PubMed

    Ensslen, Philipp; Wagenknecht, Hans-Achim

    2015-10-20

    Light-harvesting complexes collect light energy and deliver it by a cascade of energy and electron transfer processes to the reaction center where charge separation leads to storage as chemical energy. The design of artificial light-harvesting assemblies faces enormous challenges because several antenna chromophores need to be kept in close proximity but self-quenching needs to be avoided. Double stranded DNA as a supramolecular scaffold plays a promising role due to its characteristic structural properties. Automated DNA synthesis allows incorporation of artificial chromophore-modified building blocks, and sequence design allows precise control of the distances and orientations between the chromophores. The helical twist between the chromophores, which is induced by the DNA framework, controls energy and electron transfer and thereby reduces the self-quenching that is typically observed in chromophore aggregates. This Account summarizes covalently multichromophore-modified DNA and describes how such multichromophore arrays were achieved by Watson-Crick-specific and DNA-templated self-assembly. The covalent DNA systems were prepared by incorporation of chromophores as DNA base substitutions (either as C-nucleosides or with acyclic linkers as substitutes for the 2'-deoxyribofuranoside) and as DNA base modifications. Studies with DNA base substitutions revealed that distances but more importantly relative orientations of the chromophores govern the energy transfer efficiencies and thereby the light-harvesting properties. With DNA base substitutions, duplex stabilization was faced and could be overcome, for instance, by zipper-like placement of the chromophores in both strands. For both principal structural approaches, DNA-based light-harvesting antenna could be realized. The major disadvantages, however, for covalent multichromophore DNA conjugates are the poor yields of synthesis and the solubility issues for oligonucleotides with more than 5-10 chromophore

  4. Self-assembled light-harvesting peptide nanotubes for mimicking natural photosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jae Hong; Lee, Minah; Lee, Joon Seok; Park, Chan Beum

    2012-01-01

    Light-harvesting peptide nanotubes are synthesized by the self-assembly of diphenylalanine with THPP and platinum nanoparticles (nPt; see picture; TEOA = triethanolamine). The light-harvesting peptide nanotubes are suitable for mimicking photosynthesis because of their structure and electrochemical properties that are similar to the ones of photosystem I in natural photosynthesis. PMID:21976303

  5. Self-assembled photosynthesis-inspired light harvesting material and solar cells containing the same

    DOEpatents

    Lindsey, Jonathan S.; Chinnasamy, Muthiah; Fan, Dazhong

    2009-12-15

    A solar cell is described that comprises: (a) a semiconductor charge separation material; (b) at least one electrode connected to the charge separation material; and (c) a light-harvesting film on the charge separation material, the light-harvesting film comprising non-covalently coupled, self-assembled units of porphyrinic macrocycles. The porphyrinic macrocycles preferably comprise: (i) an intramolecularly coordinated metal; (ii) a first coordinating substituent; and (iii) a second coordinating substituent opposite the first coordinating substituent. The porphyrinic macrocycles can be assembled by repeating intermolecular coordination complexes of the metal, the first coordinating substituent and the second coordinating substituent.

  6. Micelle-Induced Self-Assembling Protein Nanowires: Versatile Supramolecular Scaffolds for Designing the Light-Harvesting System.

    PubMed

    Sun, Hongcheng; Zhang, Xiyu; Miao, Lu; Zhao, Linlu; Luo, Quan; Xu, Jiayun; Liu, Junqiu

    2016-01-26

    Organic nanoparticle induced self-assembly of proteins with periodic nanostructures is a promising and burgeoning strategy to develop functional biomimetic nanomaterials. Cricoid proteins afford monodispersed and well-defined hollow centers, and can be used to multivalently interact with geometrically symmetric nanoparticles to form one-dimensional protein nanoarrays. Herein, we report that core-cross-linked micelles can direct cricoid stable protein one (SP1) to self-assembling nanowires through multiple electrostatic interactions. One micelle can act as an organic nanoparticle to interact with two central concaves of SP1 in an opposite orientation to form a sandwich structure, further controlling the assembly direction to supramolecular protein nanowires. The reported versatile supramolecular scaffolds can be optionally manipulated to develop multifunctional integrated or synergistic biomimetic nanomaterials. Artificial light-harvesting nanowires are further developed to mimic the energy transfer process of photosynthetic bacteria for their structural similarity, by means of labeling donor and acceptor chromophores to SP1 rings and spherical micelles, respectively. The absorbing energy can be transferred within the adjacent donors around the ring and shuttling the collected energy to the nearby acceptor chromophore. The artificial light-harvesting nanowires are designed by mimicking the structural characteristic of natural LH-2 complex, which are meaningful in exploring the photosynthesis process in vitro. PMID:26634314

  7. Self-assembly of light-harvesting crystalline nanosheets in aqueous media.

    PubMed

    Shahar, Chen; Baram, Jonathan; Tidhar, Yaron; Weissman, Haim; Cohen, Sidney R; Pinkas, Iddo; Rybtchinski, Boris

    2013-04-23

    A methodology leading to facile self-assembly of crystalline aromatic arrays in dilute aqueous solutions would enable efficient fabrication and processing of organic photonic and electronic materials in water. In particular, soluble 2D crystalline nanosheets may mimic the properties of photoactive thin films and self-assembled monolayers, covering large areas with ordered nanometer-thick material. We designed such solution-phase arrays using hierarchical self-assembly of amphiphilic perylene diimides in aqueous media. The assemblies were characterized by cryogenic transmission electron microscopy (cryo-TEM), revealing crystalline order and 2D morphology (confirmed by AFM studies). The order and morphology are preserved upon drying as evidenced by TEM and AFM. The 2D crystalline-like structures exhibit broadening and red-shifted absorption bands in UV-vis spectra, typical for PDI crystals and liquid crystals. Photophysical studies including femtosecond transient absorption spectroscopy reveal that two of the assemblies are superior light-harvesters due to excellent solar spectrum coverage and fast exciton transfer, in one case showing exciton diffusion comparable to solid-state crystalline systems based on perylene tetracarboxylic dianhidride (PTCDA). PMID:23521176

  8. Structure determination of a bio-inspired self-assembled light-harvesting antenna by solid-state NMR and molecular modeling.

    PubMed

    Pandit, Anjali; Ocakoglu, Kasim; Buda, Francesco; van Marle, Thomas; Holzwarth, Alfred R; de Groot, Huub J M

    2013-09-26

    The molecular stacking of an artificial light-harvesting antenna self-assembled from 3(1)-aminofunctionalized zinc-chlorins was determined by solid-state NMR in combination with quantum-chemical and molecular-mechanics modeling. A library of trial molecular stacking arrangements was generated based on available structural data for natural and semisynthetic homologues of the Zn-chlorins. NMR assignments obtained for the monomer in solution were validated for self-assembled aggregates and refined with (1)H-(13)C heteronuclear correlation spectroscopy data collected from samples with (13)C at natural abundance. Solid-state ring-current shifts for the (1)H provided spatial constraints to determine the molecular overlap. This procedure allows for a discrimination between different self-assembled structures and a classification of the stacking mode in terms of electric dipole alignment and π-π interactions, parameters that determine the functional properties of light-harvesting assemblies and conducting nanowires. The combination with quantum-mechanical modeling then allowed building a low-resolution packing model in silico from molecular stacks. The method allows for moderate disorder and residual polymorphism at the stack or molecular level and is generally applicable to determine molecular packing structures of aromatic molecules with structural asymmetry, such as is commonly provided by functionalized side chains that serve to tune the self-assembly process. PMID:23566216

  9. Self-Assembled Light-Harvesting System from Chromophores in Lipid Vesicles.

    PubMed

    Sahin, Tuba; Harris, Michelle A; Vairaprakash, Pothiappan; Niedzwiedzki, Dariusz M; Subramanian, Vijaya; Shreve, Andrew P; Bocian, David F; Holten, Dewey; Lindsey, Jonathan S

    2015-08-13

    Lipid vesicles are used as the organizational structure of self-assembled light-harvesting systems. Following analysis of 17 chromophores, six were selected for inclusion in vesicle-based antennas. The complementary absorption features of the chromophores span the near-ultraviolet, visible, and near-infrared region. Although the overall concentration of the pigments is low (~1 μM for quantitative spectroscopic studies) in a cuvette, the lipid-vesicle system affords high concentration (≥10 mM) in the bilayer for efficient energy flow from donor to acceptor. Energy transfer was characterized in 13 representative binary mixtures using static techniques (fluorescence-excitation versus absorptance spectra, quenching of donor fluorescence, modeling emission spectra of a mixture versus components) and time-resolved spectroscopy (fluorescence, ultrafast absorption). Binary donor-acceptor systems that employ a boron-dipyrrin donor (S0 ↔ S1 absorption/emission in the blue-green) and a chlorin or bacteriochlorin acceptor (S0 ↔ S1 absorption/emission in the red or near-infrared) have an average excitation-energy-transfer efficiency (ΦEET) of ~50%. Binary systems with a chlorin donor and a chlorin or bacteriochlorin acceptor have ΦEET ∼ 85%. The differences in ΦEET generally track the donor-fluorescence/acceptor-absorption spectral overlap within a dipole-dipole coupling (Förster) mechanism. Substantial deviation from single-exponential decay of the excited donor (due to the dispersion of donor-acceptor distances) is expected and observed. The time profiles and resulting ΦEET are modeled on the basis of (Förster) energy transfer between chromophores relatively densely packed in a two-dimensional compartment. Initial studies of two ternary and one quaternary combination of chromophores show the enhanced spectral coverage and energy-transfer efficacy expected on the basis of the binary systems. Collectively, this approach may provide one of the simplest designs for

  10. Structure-property relationships for self-assembled zinc chlorin light-harvesting dye aggregates.

    PubMed

    Huber, Valerie; Sengupta, Sanchita; Würthner, Frank

    2008-01-01

    A series of zinc 3(1)-hydroxymethyl chlorins 10 a-e and zinc 3(1)-hydroxyethyl chlorins 17 with varied structural features were synthesized by modifying naturally occurring chlorophyll a. Solvent-, temperature-, and concentration-dependent UV/Vis and CD spectroscopic methods as well as microscopic investigations were performed to explore the importance of particular functional groups and steric effects on the self-assembly behavior of these zinc chlorins. Semisynthetic zinc chlorins 10 a-e possess the three functional units relevant for self-assembly found in their natural bacteriochlorophyll (BChl) counterparts, namely, the 3(1)-OH group, a central metal ion, and the 13(1) C==O moiety along the Qy axis, and they contain various 17(2)-substituents. Depending on whether the zinc chlorins have 17(2)-hydrophobic or hydrophilic side chains, they self-assemble in nonpolar organic solvents or in aqueous media, respectively. Zinc chlorins possessing at least two long side chains provide soluble self-aggregates that are stable in solution for a prolonged time, thus facilitating elucidation of their properties by optical spectroscopy. The morphology of the zinc chlorin aggregates was elucidated by atomic force microscopy (AFM) studies, revealing well-defined nanoscale rod structures for zinc chlorin 10 b with a height of about 6 nm. It is worth noting that this size is in good accordance with a tubular arrangement of the dyes similar to that observed in their natural BChl counterparts in the light-harvesting chlorosomes of green bacteria. Furthermore, for the epimeric 3(1)-hydroxyethyl zinc chlorins 17 with hydrophobic side chains, the influence of the chirality center at the 3(1)-position on the aggregation behavior was studied in detail by UV/Vis and CD spectroscopy. Unlike zinc chlorins 10, the 3(1)-hydroxyethyl zinc chlorins 17 formed only small oligomers and not higher rod aggregate structures, which can be attributed to the steric effect imposed by the additional

  11. Highly Efficient Photon Upconversion in Self-Assembled Light-Harvesting Molecular Systems

    PubMed Central

    Ogawa, Taku; Yanai, Nobuhiro; Monguzzi, Angelo; Kimizuka, Nobuo

    2015-01-01

    To meet the world’s demands on the development of sunlight-powered renewable energy production, triplet–triplet annihilation-based photon upconversion (TTA–UC) has raised great expectations. However, an ideal highly efficient, low-power, and in-air TTA–UC has not been achieved. Here, we report a novel self-assembly approach to achieve this, which enabled highly efficient TTA–UC even in the presence of oxygen. A newly developed lipophilic 9,10-diphenylanthracene-based emitter molecule functionalized with multiple hydrogen-bonding moieties spontaneously coassembled with a triplet sensitizer in organic media, showing efficient triplet sensitization and subsequent triplet energy migration among the preorganized chromophores. This supramolecular light-harvesting system shows a high UC quantum yield of 30% optimized at low excitation power in deaerated conditions. Significantly, the UC emission largely remains even in an air-saturated solution, and this approach is facilely applicable to organogel and solid-film systems. PMID:26057321

  12. A nanoscale bio-inspired light-harvesting system developed from self-assembled alkyl-functionalized metallochlorin nano-aggregates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ocakoglu, Kasim; Joya, Khurram S.; Harputlu, Ersan; Tarnowska, Anna; Gryko, Daniel T.

    2014-07-01

    Self-assembled supramolecular organization of nano-structured biomimetic light-harvesting modules inside solid-state nano-templates can be exploited to develop excellent light-harvesting materials for artificial photosynthetic devices. We present here a hybrid light-harvesting system mimicking the chlorosomal structures of the natural photosynthetic system using synthetic zinc chlorin units (ZnChl-C6, ZnChl-C12 and ZnChl-C18) that are self-aggregated inside the anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) nano-channel membranes. AAO nano-templates were modified with a TiO2 matrix and functionalized with long hydrophobic chains to facilitate the formation of supramolecular Zn-chlorin aggregates. The transparent Zn-chlorin nano-aggregates inside the alkyl-TiO2 modified AAO nano-channels have a diameter of ~120 nm in a 60 μm length channel. UV-Vis studies and fluorescence emission spectra further confirm the formation of the supramolecular ZnChl aggregates from monomer molecules inside the alkyl-functionalized nano-channels. Our results prove that the novel and unique method can be used to produce efficient and stable light-harvesting assemblies for effective solar energy capture through transparent and stable nano-channel ceramic materials modified with bio-mimetic molecular self-assembled nano-aggregates.Self-assembled supramolecular organization of nano-structured biomimetic light-harvesting modules inside solid-state nano-templates can be exploited to develop excellent light-harvesting materials for artificial photosynthetic devices. We present here a hybrid light-harvesting system mimicking the chlorosomal structures of the natural photosynthetic system using synthetic zinc chlorin units (ZnChl-C6, ZnChl-C12 and ZnChl-C18) that are self-aggregated inside the anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) nano-channel membranes. AAO nano-templates were modified with a TiO2 matrix and functionalized with long hydrophobic chains to facilitate the formation of supramolecular Zn-chlorin aggregates. The

  13. Anisotropic organization and microscopic manipulation of self-assembling synthetic porphyrin microrods that mimic chlorosomes: bacterial light-harvesting systems.

    PubMed

    Chappaz-Gillot, Cyril; Marek, Peter L; Blaive, Bruno J; Canard, Gabriel; Bürck, Jochen; Garab, Gyozo; Hahn, Horst; Jávorfi, Tamás; Kelemen, Loránd; Krupke, Ralph; Mössinger, Dennis; Ormos, Pál; Reddy, Chilla Malla; Roussel, Christian; Steinbach, Gábor; Szabó, Milán; Ulrich, Anne S; Vanthuyne, Nicolas; Vijayaraghavan, Aravind; Zupcanova, Anita; Balaban, Teodor Silviu

    2012-01-18

    Being able to control in time and space the positioning, orientation, movement, and sense of rotation of nano- to microscale objects is currently an active research area in nanoscience, having diverse nanotechnological applications. In this paper, we demonstrate unprecedented control and maneuvering of rod-shaped or tubular nanostructures with high aspect ratios which are formed by self-assembling synthetic porphyrins. The self-assembly algorithm, encoded by appended chemical-recognition groups on the periphery of these porphyrins, is the same as the one operating for chlorosomal bacteriochlorophylls (BChl's). Chlorosomes, rod-shaped organelles with relatively long-range molecular order, are the most efficient naturally occurring light-harvesting systems. They are used by green photosynthetic bacteria to trap visible and infrared light of minute intensities even at great depths, e.g., 100 m below water surface or in volcanic vents in the absence of solar radiation. In contrast to most other natural light-harvesting systems, the chlorosomal antennae are devoid of a protein scaffold to orient the BChl's; thus, they are an attractive goal for mimicry by synthetic chemists, who are able to engineer more robust chromophores to self-assemble. Functional devices with environmentally friendly chromophores-which should be able to act as photosensitizers within hybrid solar cells, leading to high photon-to-current conversion efficiencies even under low illumination conditions-have yet to be fabricated. The orderly manner in which the BChl's and their synthetic counterparts self-assemble imparts strong diamagnetic and optical anisotropies and flow/shear characteristics to their nanostructured assemblies, allowing them to be manipulated by electrical, magnetic, or tribomechanical forces. PMID:22148684

  14. Artificial photosynthetic reaction centers coupled to light-harvesting antennas.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Pulak Kumar; Smirnov, Anatoly Yu; Nori, Franco

    2011-12-01

    We analyze a theoretical model for energy and electron transfer in an artificial photosynthetic system. The photosystem consists of a molecular triad (i.e., with a donor, a photosensitive unit, and an acceptor) coupled to four accessory light-harvesting-antenna pigments. The resonant energy transfer from the antennas to the artificial reaction center (the molecular triad) is described here by the Förster mechanism. We consider two different kinds of arrangements of the accessory light-harvesting pigments around the reaction center. The first arrangement allows direct excitation transfer to the reaction center from all the surrounding pigments. The second configuration transmits energy via a cascade mechanism along a chain of light-harvesting chromophores, where only one chromophore is connected to the reaction center. We show that the artificial photosynthetic system using the cascade energy transfer absorbs photons in a broader wavelength range and converts their energy into electricity with a higher efficiency than the system based on direct couplings between all the antenna chromophores and the reaction center. PMID:22304071

  15. Artificial photosynthetic reaction centers coupled to light-harvesting antennas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghosh, Pulak Kumar; Smirnov, Anatoly Yu.; Nori, Franco

    2011-12-01

    We analyze a theoretical model for energy and electron transfer in an artificial photosynthetic system. The photosystem consists of a molecular triad (i.e., with a donor, a photosensitive unit, and an acceptor) coupled to four accessory light-harvesting-antenna pigments. The resonant energy transfer from the antennas to the artificial reaction center (the molecular triad) is described here by the Förster mechanism. We consider two different kinds of arrangements of the accessory light-harvesting pigments around the reaction center. The first arrangement allows direct excitation transfer to the reaction center from all the surrounding pigments. The second configuration transmits energy via a cascade mechanism along a chain of light-harvesting chromophores, where only one chromophore is connected to the reaction center. We show that the artificial photosynthetic system using the cascade energy transfer absorbs photons in a broader wavelength range and converts their energy into electricity with a higher efficiency than the system based on direct couplings between all the antenna chromophores and the reaction center.

  16. Artificial light-harvesting arrays for solar energy conversion.

    PubMed

    Harriman, Anthony

    2015-07-28

    Solar fuel production, the process whereby an energy-rich substance is produced using electrons provided by water under exposure to sunlight, requires the cooperative accumulation of multiple numbers of photons. Identifying the optimum reagents is a difficult challenge, even without imposing the restriction that these same materials must function as both sensitiser and catalyst. The blockade caused by an inadequate supply of photons at the catalytic sites might be resolved by making use of an artificial light-harvesting array whose sole purpose is to funnel photons of appropriate frequency to the active catalyst, which can now be a dark reagent. Here we consider several types of artificial photon collectors built from fluorescent modules interconnected via electronic energy transfer. Emphasis is placed on the materials aspects and on establishing the basic operating principles. PMID:26086688

  17. Protein-Framed Multi-Porphyrin Micelles for a Hybrid Natural-Artificial Light-Harvesting Nanosystem.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yannan; Jin, Jiyang; Deng, Hongping; Li, Ke; Zheng, Yongli; Yu, Chunyang; Zhou, Yongfeng

    2016-07-01

    A micelle-like hybrid natural-artificial light-harvesting nanosystem was prepared through protein-framed electrostatic self-assembly of phycocyanin and a four-armed porphyrin star polymer. The nanosystem has a special structure of pomegranate-like unimolecular micelle aggregate with one phycocyanin acceptor in the center and multiple porphyrin donors in the shell. It can inhibit donor self-quenching effectively and display efficient transfer of excitation energy (about 80.1 %) in water. Furthermore, the number of donors contributing to a single acceptor could reach as high as about 179 in this nanosystem. PMID:27187799

  18. Self-assembly of natural light-harvesting bacteriochlorophylls of green sulfur photosynthetic bacteria in silicate capsules as stable models of chlorosomes.

    PubMed

    Saga, Yoshitaka; Akai, Sho; Miyatake, Tomohiro; Tamiaki, Hitoshi

    2006-01-01

    Naturally occurring bacteriochlorophyll(BChl)s-c, -d, and -e from green sulfur photosynthetic bacteria were self-assembled in an aqueous solution in the presence of octadecyltriethoxysilane and tetraethoxysilane, followed by polycondensation of the alkoxysilanes by incubation for 50 h at 25 degrees C. The resulting BChl self-assemblies in silicate capsules exhibited visible absorption and circular dichroism spectra similar to the corresponding natural light-harvesting systems (chlorosomes) of green sulfur bacteria. Dynamic light scattering measurements indicated that the silicate capsules had an average hydrodynamic diameter of several hundred nanometers. BChl self-aggregates in silicate capsules were significantly stable to a nonionic surfactant Triton X-100, which was apt to decompose the BChl aggregates to their monomeric form, compared with conventional micelle systems. BChls in silicate capsules were more tolerant to demetalation of the central magnesium under acidic conditions than the natural systems. PMID:16848406

  19. Donor-acceptor star-shaped conjugated macroelectrolytes: synthesis, light-harvesting properties, and self-assembly-induced Förster resonance energy transfer.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Li; Liu, Cheng-Fang; Xu, Wei-Dong; Jiang, Yi; Lai, Wen-Yong; Huang, Wei

    2015-06-01

    A novel series of donor-acceptor star-shaped conjugated macroelectrolytes (CMEs), denoted as 4FTs, including anionic carboxylic acid sodium groups (4FNaT), neutral diethanolamine groups (4FNOHT), and cationic ammonium groups (4FNBrT), were designed, synthesized, and explored as an excellent platform to investigate the impact of various polar pendent groups on self-assembly behaviors. The resulting CMEs with donor-acceptor star-shaped architectures exhibited distinct light-harvesting properties. The interactions between 4FTs and TrNBr, a star-shaped monodisperse CME grafted with cationic quaternary ammonium side chains, were investigated in H2O and CH3OH using steady-state, time-resolved fluorescence, dynamic light scattering (DLS), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Highly favored energy transfer has been proven by the excellent spectral overlap between TrNBr fluorescence and 4FTs absorptions which can be tuned by adjusting the pendent polar groups and solvents. It is suggested that self-assembled structures are formed between TrNBr and 4FNaT, while there is no obvious change for TrNBr/4FNOHT and TrNBr/4FNBrT in both H2O and CH3OH at low concentrations (<10(-6) M). This result is confirmed by the change of the TrNBr and 4FTs fluorescence properties and the time-resolved fluorescence data. The overall results manifest that at low concentrations the self-assembly between TrNBr and 4FTs is dominated by the electrostatic interactions. This study suggests that the functionalization of pendent polar groups of star-shaped CMEs has proven to be effective to modulate the self-assembly behaviors in dilute solutions and thus provide a strategy to further manage the optoelectronic properties. PMID:25981514

  20. Molecular and mesoscale mechanism for hierarchical self-assembly of dipeptide and porphyrin light-harvesting system.

    PubMed

    Liu, Kai; Kang, Yu; Ma, Guanghui; Möhwald, Helmuth; Yan, Xuehai

    2016-06-22

    A multi-scale theoretical investigation of dipeptide-porphyrin co-assembly systems has been carried out to establish such understanding, where two different types of the dipeptides, dilysine (KK(3+)) and diphenylalanine (FF(+)) are compared on tuning the porphyrin organization. Density functional theory results reveal that the electrostatic attraction between different functional groups has significantly strengthened the hydrogen bonds between them, which are considered as the driving force of the self-assembly at the molecular level. All-atom molecular dynamics (MD) simulation further indicates that the formation of the core-shell nanorods is driven and stabilized by the hydrophobic interaction between dipeptides and negatively charged porphyrin (H2TPPS(2-)), where the packed porphyrins stay inside as the core of the nanorods and the hydrophilic groups (amino- and carboxyl-groups) as the shell. With stronger hydrophobicity, FF(+) is more likely to insert into the porphyrin aggregates and build crosslinks than KK(3+). Moreover, dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) simulation suggests equilibrium morphologies with different dipeptides, where KK(3+)-H2TPPS(2-) assembled in fiber bundles, whereas FF(+)-H2TPPS(2-) assembled as microspheres, corresponding to the different packing behavior in MD simulations. The consistency of these results at different scales is discussed. The method used in this work could be extended for studying similar issues in hierarchical self-assembly of building blocks such biomaterials. PMID:27270974

  1. Artificial leaf structures as a UV detector formed by the self-assembly of ZnO nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Wang, Fei; Zhao, Dongxu; Guo, Zhen; Liu, Lei; Zhang, Zhenzhong; Shen, Dezhen

    2013-04-01

    Artificial leaf structures have been fabricated by the self-assembly of ZnO nanoparticles. A hydrothermal method was used to synthesize the nanoparticles. The self-assembly patterns showed asymmetric dendritic morphologies, larger surface-to-volume ratios, a broad absorption band and high resistance. A non-equilibrium two-stage-formation process included diffusion limited aggregation, and the phase-field model was introduced to explain the formation mechanism of the pattern. A high-performance ultraviolet detector was fabricated on the artificial leaf structures, which showed that the current under the irradiation of a UV lamp (1.21 mW cm(-2)) was about 10(4) times greater than in the dark. The various and functional properties of the pattern show us the vast prospects of potential applications for light harvesting systems and other optical-electric devices. PMID:23446434

  2. Artificial leaf structures as a UV detector formed by the self-assembly of ZnO nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Fei; Zhao, Dongxu; Guo, Zhen; Liu, Lei; Zhang, Zhenzhong; Shen, Dezhen

    2013-03-01

    Artificial leaf structures have been fabricated by the self-assembly of ZnO nanoparticles. A hydrothermal method was used to synthesize the nanoparticles. The self-assembly patterns showed asymmetric dendritic morphologies, larger surface-to-volume ratios, a broad absorption band and high resistance. A non-equilibrium two-stage-formation process included diffusion limited aggregation, and the phase-field model was introduced to explain the formation mechanism of the pattern. A high-performance ultraviolet detector was fabricated on the artificial leaf structures, which showed that the current under the irradiation of a UV lamp (1.21 mW cm-2) was about 104 times greater than in the dark. The various and functional properties of the pattern show us the vast prospects of potential applications for light harvesting systems and other optical-electric devices.Artificial leaf structures have been fabricated by the self-assembly of ZnO nanoparticles. A hydrothermal method was used to synthesize the nanoparticles. The self-assembly patterns showed asymmetric dendritic morphologies, larger surface-to-volume ratios, a broad absorption band and high resistance. A non-equilibrium two-stage-formation process included diffusion limited aggregation, and the phase-field model was introduced to explain the formation mechanism of the pattern. A high-performance ultraviolet detector was fabricated on the artificial leaf structures, which showed that the current under the irradiation of a UV lamp (1.21 mW cm-2) was about 104 times greater than in the dark. The various and functional properties of the pattern show us the vast prospects of potential applications for light harvesting systems and other optical-electric devices. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c3nr33748k

  3. Design of a minimal polypeptide unit for bacteriochlorophyll binding and self-assembly based on photosynthetic bacterial light-harvesting proteins.

    PubMed

    Noy, Dror; Dutton, P Leslie

    2006-02-21

    We introduce LH1beta24, a minimal 24 amino acid polypeptide that binds and assembles bacteriochlorophylls (BChls) in micelles of octyl beta-glucoside (OG) into complexes with spectral properties that resemble those of B820, a universal intermediate in the assembly of native purple bacterial light-harvesting complexes (LHs). LH1beta24 was designed by a survey of sequences and crystal structures of bacterial LH proteins from different organisms combined with currently available information from in vitro reconstitution studies and genetically modified LHs in vivo. We took as a template for the design sphbeta31, a truncated 31 amino acid analogue of the native beta-apoprotein from the core LH complex of Rhodobacter sphaeroides. This peptide self-assembles with BChls to form B820 and, upon cooling and lowering OG concentration, forms red-shifted B850 spectral species that are considered analogous to native LH complexes. We find that LH1beta24 self-assembles with BChl in OG to form homodimeric B820-type subunits comprising two LH1beta24 and two BChl molecules per subunit. We demonstrate, by modeling the structure using the highly homologous structure of LH2 from Rhodospirillum molischianum, that it has the minimal size for BChl binding. Additionally, we have compared the self-assembly of sphbeta31 and LH1beta24 with BChls and discovered that the association enthalpies and entropies of both species are similar to those measured for native LH1 from Rhodospirillum rubrum. However, sphbeta31 readily aggregates into intermediate higher oligomeric species and further to form B850 species; moreover, the assembly process of these oligomers is not reversible, and they are apparently large nonspecific BChl-peptide coaggregates rather than well-defined nativelike LH complexes. Similar aggregates were observed during LH1beta24 assembly, but these were formed less readily and required lower temperatures than sphbeta31. In view of these results, we reevaluate previous in vitro

  4. Artificial Photosynthesis at Dynamic Self-Assembled Interfaces in Water.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Malte; Troppmann, Stefan; König, Burkhard

    2016-01-01

    Artificial photosynthesis is one of the big scientific challenges of today. Self-assembled dynamic interfaces, such as vesicles or micelles, have been used as microreactors to mimic biological photosynthesis. These aggregates can help to overcome typical problems of homogeneous photocatalytic water splitting. Microheterogeneous environments organize catalyst-photosensitizer assemblies at the interface in close proximity and thus enhance intermolecular interactions. Thereby vesicles and micelles may promote photoinitiated charge separation and suppress back electron transfer. The dynamic self-assembled interfaces solubilize non-polar compounds and protect sensitive catalytic units and intermediates against degradation. In addition, vesicles provide compartmentation that was used to separate different redox environments needed for an overall water splitting system. This Minireview provides an overview of the applications of micellar and vesicular microheterogeneous systems for solar energy conversion by photosensitized water oxidation and hydrogen generation. PMID:26552728

  5. Vibronic origin of long-lived coherence in an artificial molecular light harvester

    PubMed Central

    Lim, James; Paleček, David; Caycedo-Soler, Felipe; Lincoln, Craig N.; Prior, Javier; von Berlepsch, Hans; Huelga, Susana F.; Plenio, Martin B.; Zigmantas, Donatas; Hauer, Jürgen

    2015-01-01

    Natural and artificial light-harvesting processes have recently gained new interest. Signatures of long-lasting coherence in spectroscopic signals of biological systems have been repeatedly observed, albeit their origin is a matter of ongoing debate, as it is unclear how the loss of coherence due to interaction with the noisy environments in such systems is averted. Here we report experimental and theoretical verification of coherent exciton–vibrational (vibronic) coupling as the origin of long-lasting coherence in an artificial light harvester, a molecular J-aggregate. In this macroscopically aligned tubular system, polarization-controlled 2D spectroscopy delivers an uncongested and specific optical response as an ideal foundation for an in-depth theoretical description. We derive analytical expressions that show under which general conditions vibronic coupling leads to prolonged excited-state coherence. PMID:26158602

  6. Extension of Light-Harvesting Ability of Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Complex 2 (LH2) through Ultrafast Energy Transfer from Covalently Attached Artificial Chromophores.

    PubMed

    Yoneda, Yusuke; Noji, Tomoyasu; Katayama, Tetsuro; Mizutani, Naoto; Komori, Daisuke; Nango, Mamoru; Miyasaka, Hiroshi; Itoh, Shigeru; Nagasawa, Yutaka; Dewa, Takehisa

    2015-10-14

    Introducing appropriate artificial components into natural biological systems could enrich the original functionality. To expand the available wavelength range of photosynthetic bacterial light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2 from Rhodopseudomonas acidophila 10050), artificial fluorescent dye (Alexa Fluor 647: A647) was covalently attached to N- and C-terminal Lys residues in LH2 α-polypeptides with a molar ratio of A647/LH2 ≃ 9/1. Fluorescence and transient absorption spectroscopies revealed that intracomplex energy transfer from A647 to intrinsic chromophores of LH2 (B850) occurs in a multiexponential manner, with time constants varying from 440 fs to 23 ps through direct and B800-mediated indirect pathways. Kinetic analyses suggested that B800 chromophores mediate faster energy transfer, and the mechanism was interpretable in terms of Förster theory. This study demonstrates that a simple attachment of external chromophores with a flexible linkage can enhance the light harvesting activity of LH2 without affecting inherent functions of energy transfer, and can achieve energy transfer in the subpicosecond range. Addition of external chromophores, thus, represents a useful methodology for construction of advanced hybrid light-harvesting systems that afford solar energy in the broad spectrum. PMID:26403467

  7. Time dependent DFT investigation of the optical properties of artificial light harvesting special pairs.

    PubMed

    Agnihotri, Neha; Steer, Ronald P

    2016-06-01

    Computational modeling of selected artificial special pairs has been carried out. The structures chosen are bio-inspired molecular models of the light harvesting system II that have been previously investigated experimentally. Time-dependent density functional theory calculations have been employed to characterize the inter-macrocycle interactions resulting from two zinc porphyrins that are covalently linked with rigid linkers that vary the inter-porphyrin distance and the inter-planar angle in a C2v framework. The effects of varying the linker structure have been explored for electronic states with energies up to and including the Soret-correlated states in the dimer. An expansion of the Gouterman four orbital model for the monomers to an eight orbital model in the dimers provides a reasonable explanation of the inter-macrocycle interactions and provides insight into their experimental properties. PMID:27212274

  8. Functionalized dye encapsulated polymer nanoparticles attached with a BSA scaffold as efficient antenna materials for artificial light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Jana, Bikash; Bhattacharyya, Santanu; Patra, Amitava

    2016-09-21

    A potential strategy for a new generation light harvesting system is multi-chromophoric donor-acceptor pairs where light energy is absorbed by an antenna complex and subsequently transfers its energy to the acceptor via energy transfer. Here, we design a system of a functionalized polymer nanoparticle-protein scaffold for efficient light harvesting and white light generation where a dye doped polymer nanoparticle acts as a donor and a dye encapsulated BSA protein acts as an acceptor. Analysis reveals that 91.3% energy transfer occurs from the dye doped polymer nanoparticle to the dye encapsulated BSA protein. The antenna effect of this light harvesting system is found to be 31 at a donor to acceptor ratio of 0.82 : 1 which is unprecedented. The enhanced effective molar extinction coefficient of the acceptor dye is potential for the light harvesting system. Bright white light emission with a quantum yield of 14% under single wavelength excitation is obtained by changing the ratio of donor to acceptor. Analysis reveals that the efficient energy transfer in this polymer-protein assembly may open up new possibilities in designing artificial light harvesting systems for future applications. PMID:27546792

  9. Stepwise photoconversion of an artificial light-harvesting array built from extended BODIPY units.

    PubMed

    Harriman, Anthony; Stachelek, Patrycja; Sutter, Alexandra; Ziessel, Raymond

    2015-06-01

    A molecular dyad, comprising two disparate extended boron dipyrromethene (BODIPY) units, has been identified as a potential component of artificial light-harvesting arrays. Highly efficient, intramolecular electronic energy transfer takes place under illumination but there is some competition from light-induced electron transfer along the molecular axis. The primary energy acceptor has a somewhat shortened excited-state lifetime and reduced emission quantum yield due to charge transfer from a terminal amine residue, the latter being required for the molecular system to operate in organic solar cells. Under continuous illumination with simulated solar light, the dyad undergoes very slow decomposition. In a protic solvent, both BODIPY units degrade at the same rate via an autocatalytic process. The products, one of which is a protonated analogue of the donor, degrade further by independent routes. In aprotic solvents or thin plastic films, the acceptor BODIPY dye absorbing at lowest energy undergoes photochemical degradation as above but the donor is much more stable under these conditions. At each stage of degradation, the molecule retains the ability to sensitize an amorphous silicon solar cell and the overall turnover number with respect to absorbed photons exceeds 10 million. The optical properties of the target compound nicely complement those of the solar cell and sensitization helps to avoid Staebler-Wronski photo-degradation. PMID:25898915

  10. In Vitro Self-Assembly of the Light Harvesting Pigment-Protein LH2 Revealed by Ultrafast Spectroscopy and Electron Microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Schubert, Axel; Stenstam, Anna; Beenken, Wichard J. D.; Herek, Jennifer L.; Cogdell, Richard; Pullerits, Tõnu; Sundström, Villy

    2004-01-01

    Controlled ensemble formation of protein-surfactant systems provides a fundamental concept for the realization of nanoscale devices with self-organizing capability. In this context, spectroscopic monitoring of pigment-containing proteins yields detailed structural information. Here we have studied the association behavior of the bacterial light-harvesting protein LH2 from Rhodobacter spheroides in an n,n-dimethyldodecylamine-n-oxide/water environment. Time-resolved studies of the excitation annihilation yielded information about aggregate sizes and packing of the protein complexes therein. The results are compared to transmission electron microscopy images of instantaneously frozen samples. Our data indicate the manifestation of different phases, which are discussed with respect to the thermodynamic equilibrium in ternary protein-surfactant-water systems. Accordingly, by varying the concentration the formation of different types of aggregates can be controlled. Conditions for the appearance of isolated LH2 complexes are defined. PMID:15041674

  11. DNA-Mediated Self-Assembly of Artificial Vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Hadorn, Maik; Eggenberger Hotz, Peter

    2010-01-01

    Background Although multicompartment systems made of single unilamellar vesicles offer the potential to outperform single compartment systems widely used in analytic, synthetic, and medical applications, their use has remained marginal to date. On the one hand, this can be attributed to the binary character of the majority of the current tethering protocols that impedes the implementation of real multicomponent or multifunctional systems. On the other hand, the few tethering protocols theoretically providing multicompartment systems composed of several distinct vesicle populations suffer from the readjustment of the vesicle formation procedure as well as from the loss of specificity of the linking mechanism over time. Methodology/Principal Findings In previous studies, we presented implementations of multicompartment systems and resolved the readjustment of the vesicle formation procedure as well as the loss of specificity by using linkers consisting of biotinylated DNA single strands that were anchored to phospholipid-grafted biotinylated PEG tethers via streptavidin as a connector. The systematic analysis presented herein provides evidences for the incorporation of phospholipid-grafted biotinylated PEG tethers to the vesicle membrane during vesicle formation, providing specific anchoring sites for the streptavidin loading of the vesicle membrane. Furthermore, DNA-mediated vesicle-vesicle self-assembly was found to be sequence-dependent and to depend on the presence of monovalent salts. Conclusions/Significance This study provides a solid basis for the implementation of multi-vesicle assemblies that may affect at least three distinct domains. (i) Analysis. Starting with a minimal system, the complexity of a bottom-up system is increased gradually facilitating the understanding of the components and their interaction. (ii) Synthesis. Consecutive reactions may be implemented in networks of vesicles that outperform current single compartment bioreactors in

  12. Two-dimensional artificial light-harvesting antennae with predesigned high-order structure and robust photosensitising activity.

    PubMed

    Feng, Xiao; Ding, Xuesong; Chen, Long; Wu, Yang; Liu, Lili; Addicoat, Matthew; Irle, Stephan; Dong, Yuping; Jiang, Donglin

    2016-01-01

    Highly ordered discrete assemblies of chlorophylls that are found in natural light-harvesting antennae are key to photosynthesis, which converts light energy to chemical energy and is the principal producer of organic matter on Earth. Porphyrins and phthalocyanines, which are analogues of chlorophylls, exhibit a strong absorbance of visible and near-infrared light, respectively. A highly ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae would harvest photons over the entire solar spectrum for chemical transformation. However, such a robust antennae has not yet been synthesised. Herein, we report a strategy that merges covalent bonds and noncovalent forces to produce highly ordered two-dimensional porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae. This methodology enables control over the stoichiometry and order of the porphyrin and phthalocyanine units; more importantly, this approach is compatible with various metalloporphyrin and metallophthalocyanine derivatives and thus may lead to the generation of a broad structural diversity of two-dimensional artificial antennae. These ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine two-dimensional antennae exhibit unique optical properties and catalytic functions that are not available with single-component or non-structured materials. These 2D artificial antennae exhibit exceptional light-harvesting capacity over the entire solar spectrum as a result of a synergistic light-absorption effect. In addition, they exhibit outstanding photosensitising activities in using both visible and near-infrared photons for producing singlet oxygen. PMID:27622274

  13. Artificial life simulation of self-assembly in bacteriophage by movable finite automata.

    PubMed

    Shirayama, Masatoshi; Koshino, Makoto; Hatakeyama, Toyomasa; Kimura, Haruhiko

    2004-11-01

    This paper presents a model which is based on biological research using the movable finite automata (MFA) on a self-assembly of T4 phage, and exhibits the results of artificial life simulation. In the previous work, Thompson and Goel [Artificial Life, Addison Weley, 1989, pp. 317-340; Biosystems 18 (1985) 23; J. Theor. Biol. 131 (1988) 351] presented the movable finite automata (MFA) which has a capability of moving on finite automata, and simulated on a computer. They were represented individual rectangular boxes, however, the results of simulation was different from real T4 phage. We propose the sphere model as a protein structure, and simulate the self-assembly of the entire structure of the T4 phage on a computer. PMID:15527954

  14. Artificial light-harvesting arrays: electronic energy migration and trapping on a sphere and between spheres.

    PubMed

    Iehl, Julien; Nierengarten, Jean-François; Harriman, Anthony; Bura, Thomas; Ziessel, Raymond

    2012-01-18

    A sophisticated model of the natural light-harvesting antenna has been devised by decorating a C(60) hexa-adduct with ten yellow and two blue boron dipyrromethene (Bodipy) dyes in such a way that the dyes retain their individuality and assist solubility of the fullerene. Unusually, the fullerene core is a poor electron acceptor and does not enter into light-induced electron-transfer reactions with the appended dyes, but ineffective electronic energy transfer from the excited-state dye to the C(60) residue competes with fluorescence from the yellow dye. Intraparticle electronic energy transfer from yellow to blue dyes can be followed by steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy and by excitation spectra for isolated C(60) nanoparticles dissolved in dioxane at 293 K and at 77 K. The decorated particles can be loaded into polymer films by spin coating from solution. In the dried film, efficient energy transfer occurs such that photons absorbed by the yellow dye are emitted by the blue dye. Films can also be prepared to contain C(60) nanoparticles loaded with the yellow Bodipy dye but lacking the blue dye and, under these circumstances, electronic energy migration occurs between yellow dyes appended to the same nanoparticle and, at higher loading, to dye molecules on nearby particles. Doping these latter polymer films with the mixed-dye nanoparticle coalesces these multifarious processes in a single system. Thus, long-range energy migration occurs among yellow dyes attached to different particles before trapping at a blue dye. In this respect, the film resembles the natural photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes, albeit at much reduced efficacy. The decorated nanoparticles sensitize amorphous silicon photocells. PMID:22148681

  15. Ultrahigh-density storage media prepared by artificially assisted self-assembling methods.

    PubMed

    Naito, Katsuyuki

    2005-12-01

    Two types of recording media possessing nanodot structures were investigated. The media were prepared by an artificially assisted self-assembling (AASA) method, which includes simple nanopatterning using a nanoimprint and fine nanopatterning using self-assembling organic molecules. One type of recording media is circumferential magnetic patterned media prepared on a 2.5-in.-diam glass plate. A Ni master disk possessing spiral patterns with 60-250 nm width lands and a 400 nm width groove was pressed to a resist film on a CoCrPt film to transfer the spiral patterns. A diblock copolymer solution was cast into the obtained grooves, and then annealed to prepare self-assembling dot structures aligned along the grooves. According to the dot patterns, the lower magnetic films were patterned by ion milling to yield patterned media with 40 nm diameter. We have also prepared FePt dot media with high magnetic anisotropy for near-field and magnetic-field hybrid recording aiming at more than 1 Tbin.2 density. A Ni stamp disk with aligned dot structures was also prepared by the AASA method to produce patterned media at the lowest cost. The other type of media was organic patterned media for X-Y type near-field optical storage. Bulky dye molecules were evaporated in vacuum to produce self-assembling amorphous nanodots. The dots were arranged by the AASA method, i.e., according to the polymethylmethacrylate film hole arrays or chemically patterned surface. PMID:16396600

  16. Design and self-assembly of simple coat proteins for artificial viruses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernandez-Garcia, Armando; Kraft, Daniela J.; Janssen, Anne F. J.; Bomans, Paul H. H.; Sommerdijk, Nico A. J. M.; Thies-Weesie, Dominique M. E.; Favretto, Marco E.; Brock, Roland; de Wolf, Frits A.; Werten, Marc W. T.; van der Schoot, Paul; Stuart, Martien Cohen; de Vries, Renko

    2014-09-01

    Viruses are among the simplest biological systems and are highly effective vehicles for the delivery of genetic material into susceptible host cells. Artificial viruses can be used as model systems for providing insights into natural viruses and can be considered a testing ground for developing artificial life. Moreover, they are used in biomedical and biotechnological applications, such as targeted delivery of nucleic acids for gene therapy and as scaffolds in material science. In a natural setting, survival of viruses requires that a significant fraction of the replicated genomes be completely protected by coat proteins. Complete protection of the genome is ensured by a highly cooperative supramolecular process between the coat proteins and the nucleic acids, which is based on reversible, weak and allosteric interactions only. However, incorporating this type of supramolecular cooperativity into artificial viruses remains challenging. Here, we report a rational design for a self-assembling minimal viral coat protein based on simple polypeptide domains. Our coat protein features precise control over the cooperativity of its self-assembly with single DNA molecules to finally form rod-shaped virus-like particles. We confirm the validity of our design principles by showing that the kinetics of self-assembly of our virus-like particles follows a previous model developed for tobacco mosaic virus. We show that our virus-like particles protect DNA against enzymatic degradation and transfect cells with considerable efficiency, making them promising delivery vehicles.

  17. Towards building artificial light harvesting complexes: enhanced singlet-singlet energy transfer between donor and acceptor pairs bound to albumins.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Challa V; Duff, Michael R

    2008-12-01

    -natural systems have been self-assembled which can capture donor-acceptor pairs and facilitate singlet-singlet energy transfer. Such systems may form a basis for the design and construction of protein-based multi-chromophore self-assemblies for solar light harvesting, conversion and storage. PMID:19037505

  18. Quantum coherence controls the charge separation in a prototypical artificial light-harvesting system

    PubMed Central

    Andrea Rozzi, Carlo; Maria Falke, Sarah; Spallanzani, Nicola; Rubio, Angel; Molinari, Elisa; Brida, Daniele; Maiuri, Margherita; Cerullo, Giulio; Schramm, Heiko; Christoffers, Jens; Lienau, Christoph

    2013-01-01

    The efficient conversion of light into electricity or chemical fuels is a fundamental challenge. In artificial photosynthetic and photovoltaic devices, this conversion is generally thought to happen on ultrafast, femto-to-picosecond timescales and to involve an incoherent electron transfer process. In some biological systems, however, there is growing evidence that the coherent motion of electronic wavepackets is an essential primary step, raising questions about the role of quantum coherence in artificial devices. Here we investigate the primary charge-transfer process in a supramolecular triad, a prototypical artificial reaction centre. Combining high time-resolution femtosecond spectroscopy and time-dependent density functional theory, we provide compelling evidence that the driving mechanism of the photoinduced current generation cycle is a correlated wavelike motion of electrons and nuclei on a timescale of few tens of femtoseconds. We highlight the fundamental role of the interface between chromophore and charge acceptor in triggering the coherent wavelike electron-hole splitting. PMID:23511467

  19. Vibronic coupling explains the ultrafast carotenoid-to-bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in natural and artificial light harvesters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perlík, Václav; Seibt, Joachim; Cranston, Laura J.; Cogdell, Richard J.; Lincoln, Craig N.; Savolainen, Janne; Šanda, František; Mančal, Tomáš; Hauer, Jürgen

    2015-06-01

    The initial energy transfer steps in photosynthesis occur on ultrafast timescales. We analyze the carotenoid to bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in LH2 Marichromatium purpuratum as well as in an artificial light-harvesting dyad system by using transient grating and two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with 10 fs time resolution. We find that Förster-type models reproduce the experimentally observed 60 fs transfer times, but overestimate coupling constants, which lead to a disagreement with both linear absorption and electronic 2D-spectra. We show that a vibronic model, which treats carotenoid vibrations on both electronic ground and excited states as part of the system's Hamiltonian, reproduces all measured quantities. Importantly, the vibronic model presented here can explain the fast energy transfer rates with only moderate coupling constants, which are in agreement with structure based calculations. Counterintuitively, the vibrational levels on the carotenoid electronic ground state play the central role in the excited state population transfer to bacteriochlorophyll; resonance between the donor-acceptor energy gap and the vibrational ground state energies is the physical basis of the ultrafast energy transfer rates in these systems.

  20. Vibronic coupling explains the ultrafast carotenoid-to-bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in natural and artificial light harvesters.

    PubMed

    Perlík, Václav; Seibt, Joachim; Cranston, Laura J; Cogdell, Richard J; Lincoln, Craig N; Savolainen, Janne; Šanda, František; Mančal, Tomáš; Hauer, Jürgen

    2015-06-01

    The initial energy transfer steps in photosynthesis occur on ultrafast timescales. We analyze the carotenoid to bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in LH2 Marichromatium purpuratum as well as in an artificial light-harvesting dyad system by using transient grating and two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with 10 fs time resolution. We find that Förster-type models reproduce the experimentally observed 60 fs transfer times, but overestimate coupling constants, which lead to a disagreement with both linear absorption and electronic 2D-spectra. We show that a vibronic model, which treats carotenoid vibrations on both electronic ground and excited states as part of the system's Hamiltonian, reproduces all measured quantities. Importantly, the vibronic model presented here can explain the fast energy transfer rates with only moderate coupling constants, which are in agreement with structure based calculations. Counterintuitively, the vibrational levels on the carotenoid electronic ground state play the central role in the excited state population transfer to bacteriochlorophyll; resonance between the donor-acceptor energy gap and the vibrational ground state energies is the physical basis of the ultrafast energy transfer rates in these systems. PMID:26049454

  1. Vibronic coupling explains the ultrafast carotenoid-to-bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in natural and artificial light harvesters

    SciTech Connect

    Perlík, Václav; Seibt, Joachim; Šanda, František; Mančal, Tomáš; Cranston, Laura J.; Cogdell, Richard J.; Lincoln, Craig N.; Hauer, Jürgen; Savolainen, Janne

    2015-06-07

    The initial energy transfer steps in photosynthesis occur on ultrafast timescales. We analyze the carotenoid to bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in LH2 Marichromatium purpuratum as well as in an artificial light-harvesting dyad system by using transient grating and two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with 10 fs time resolution. We find that Förster-type models reproduce the experimentally observed 60 fs transfer times, but overestimate coupling constants, which lead to a disagreement with both linear absorption and electronic 2D-spectra. We show that a vibronic model, which treats carotenoid vibrations on both electronic ground and excited states as part of the system’s Hamiltonian, reproduces all measured quantities. Importantly, the vibronic model presented here can explain the fast energy transfer rates with only moderate coupling constants, which are in agreement with structure based calculations. Counterintuitively, the vibrational levels on the carotenoid electronic ground state play the central role in the excited state population transfer to bacteriochlorophyll; resonance between the donor-acceptor energy gap and the vibrational ground state energies is the physical basis of the ultrafast energy transfer rates in these systems.

  2. Triplet excitons in natural photosynthetic and artificial light harvesting systems: Measurement and modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartzler, Daniel Allen

    artificial (B)Chl and porphyrin dimers by experimental and computational methods. This data set obtained allowed for the development of an empirical model for prediction of the triplet state site energy from a given singlet site energy and for development and calibration of a T-T coupling model. Use of these models shows that triplet state lowering by pigment-protein interaction provides photoprotection to the FMO complex, while triplet state lowering by triplet exciton formation is insufficient to provide protection to the chlorosome antenna. Additionally, the T-T coupling model shows that in dimers and other aggregates, the coupling is highly sensitive to relative monomer orientation and position, contrary to what was previously assumed. The simple exponential models used to estimate T-T couplings miss this orientation sensitivity, thus in systems with significant contact between adjacent monomers a more accurate approach is required.

  3. Highly permeable artificial water channels that can self-assemble into two-dimensional arrays.

    PubMed

    Shen, Yue-Xiao; Si, Wen; Erbakan, Mustafa; Decker, Karl; De Zorzi, Rita; Saboe, Patrick O; Kang, You Jung; Majd, Sheereen; Butler, Peter J; Walz, Thomas; Aksimentiev, Aleksei; Hou, Jun-li; Kumar, Manish

    2015-08-11

    Bioinspired artificial water channels aim to combine the high permeability and selectivity of biological aquaporin (AQP) water channels with chemical stability. Here, we carefully characterized a class of artificial water channels, peptide-appended pillar[5]arenes (PAPs). The average single-channel osmotic water permeability for PAPs is 1.0(± 0.3) × 10(-14) cm(3)/s or 3.5(± 1.0) × 10(8) water molecules per s, which is in the range of AQPs (3.4 ∼ 40.3 × 10(8) water molecules per s) and their current synthetic analogs, carbon nanotubes (CNTs, 9.0 × 10(8) water molecules per s). This permeability is an order of magnitude higher than first-generation artificial water channels (20 to ∼ 10(7) water molecules per s). Furthermore, within lipid bilayers, PAP channels can self-assemble into 2D arrays. Relevant to permeable membrane design, the pore density of PAP channel arrays (∼ 2.6 × 10(5) pores per μm(2)) is two orders of magnitude higher than that of CNT membranes (0.1 ∼ 2.5 × 10(3) pores per μm(2)). PAP channels thus combine the advantages of biological channels and CNTs and improve upon them through their relatively simple synthesis, chemical stability, and propensity to form arrays. PMID:26216964

  4. Highly permeable artificial water channels that can self-assemble into two-dimensional arrays

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Yue-xiao; Si, Wen; Erbakan, Mustafa; Decker, Karl; De Zorzi, Rita; Saboe, Patrick O.; Kang, You Jung; Majd, Sheereen; Butler, Peter J.; Walz, Thomas; Aksimentiev, Aleksei; Hou, Jun-li; Kumar, Manish

    2015-01-01

    Bioinspired artificial water channels aim to combine the high permeability and selectivity of biological aquaporin (AQP) water channels with chemical stability. Here, we carefully characterized a class of artificial water channels, peptide-appended pillar[5]arenes (PAPs). The average single-channel osmotic water permeability for PAPs is 1.0(±0.3) × 10−14 cm3/s or 3.5(±1.0) × 108 water molecules per s, which is in the range of AQPs (3.4∼40.3 × 108 water molecules per s) and their current synthetic analogs, carbon nanotubes (CNTs, 9.0 × 108 water molecules per s). This permeability is an order of magnitude higher than first-generation artificial water channels (20 to ∼107 water molecules per s). Furthermore, within lipid bilayers, PAP channels can self-assemble into 2D arrays. Relevant to permeable membrane design, the pore density of PAP channel arrays (∼2.6 × 105 pores per μm2) is two orders of magnitude higher than that of CNT membranes (0.1∼2.5 × 103 pores per μm2). PAP channels thus combine the advantages of biological channels and CNTs and improve upon them through their relatively simple synthesis, chemical stability, and propensity to form arrays. PMID:26216964

  5. Energy transfer in aggregates of bacteriochlorophyll c self-assembled with azulene derivatives.

    PubMed

    Matěnová, Martina; Lorelei Horhoiu, Viviana; Dang, Florian-Xuan; Pospíšil, Petr; Alster, Jan; Burda, Jaroslav V; Balaban, Teodor Silviu; Pšenčík, Jakub

    2014-08-21

    Bacteriochlorophyll (BChl) c is the main light-harvesting pigment of certain photosynthetic bacteria. It is found in the form of self-assembled aggregates in the so-called chlorosomes. Here we report the results of co-aggregation experiments of BChl c with azulene and its tailored derivatives. We have performed spectroscopic and quantum chemical characterization of the azulenes, followed by self-assembly experiments. The results show that only azulenes with sufficient hydrophobicity are able to induce aggregation of BChl c. Interestingly, only azulene derivatives possessing a conjugated phenyl ring were capable of efficient (∼50%) excitation energy transfer to BChl molecules. These aggregates represent an artificial light-harvesting complex with enhanced absorption between 220 and 350 nm compared to aggregates of pure BChl c. The results provide insight into the principles of self-assembly of BChl aggregates and suggest an important role of the π-π interactions in efficient energy transfer. PMID:24999619

  6. Structure of Light-Harvesting Aggregates in Individual Chlorosomes.

    PubMed

    Günther, Lisa M; Jendrny, Marc; Bloemsma, Erik A; Tank, Marcus; Oostergetel, Gert T; Bryant, Donald A; Knoester, Jasper; Köhler, Jürgen

    2016-06-23

    Among all photosynthetic organisms, green bacteria have evolved one of the most efficient light-harvesting antenna, the chlorosome, that contains hundreds of thousands of bacteriochlorophyll molecules, allowing these bacteria to grow photosynthetically by absorbing only a few photons per bacteriochlorophyll molecule per day. In contrast to other photosynthetic light-harvesting antenna systems, for which a protein scaffold imposes the proper positioning of the chromophores with respect to each other, in chlorosomes, this is accomplished solely by self-assembly. This has aroused enormous interest in the structure-function relations of these assemblies, as they can serve as blueprints for artificial light harvesting systems. In spite of these efforts, conclusive structural information is not available yet, reflecting the sample heterogeneity inherent to the natural system. Here we combine mutagenesis, polarization-resolved single-particle fluorescence-excitation spectroscopy, cryo-electron microscopy, and theoretical modeling to study the chlorosomes of the green sulfur bacterium Chlorobaculum tepidum. We demonstrate that only the combination of these techniques yields unambiguous information on the structure of the bacteriochlorophyll aggregates within the chlorosomes. Moreover, we provide a quantitative estimate of the curvature variation of these aggregates that explains ongoing debates concerning the chlorosome structure. PMID:27240572

  7. Genetic exchange leading to self-assembling RNA species upon encapsulation in artificial protocells.

    PubMed

    Zenisek, Sergio-Francis M; Hayden, Eric J; Lehman, Niles

    2007-01-01

    The encapsulation of information-bearing macromolecules inside protocells is a critical step in scenarios for the origins of life on the Earth as well as for the construction of artificial living systems. For these protocells to emulate life, they must be able to transmit genetic information to other cells. We have used a water-in-oil emulsion system to simulate the compartmentalization of catalytic RNA molecules. By exploiting RNA-directed recombination reactions previously developed in our laboratory, including a ribozyme self-assembly pathway, we demonstrate that it is possible for information to be exchanged among protocells. This can happen either indirectly by the passage of divalent cations through the inter-protocellular medium (oil), or by the direct interaction of two or more protocells that allows RNA molecules to be exchanged. The degree of agitation affects the ability of such exchange. The consequences of these results include the implications that prototypical living systems can transmit information among compartments, and that the environment can regulate the extent of this crosstalk. PMID:17567246

  8. Membranes with artificial free-volume enabled by block copolymer self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petzetakis, Nikos; Balsara, Nitash

    2015-03-01

    There has been considerable success towards the development of polymeric porous materials with pore sizes in the meso- or macro-scale regime. However, manipulation of polymer porosity in the micro-scale (pore diameter < 2nm) remains challenging. Previous studies relied on changes on the chemical composition and structure of the polymeric material in order to achieve the formation of larger fractional free volume. In the present report we demonstrate a methodology with which we can force a polymeric material away from structural equilibrium and then kinetically arrest it at this -out of equilibrium- state, ultimately, enabling the creation of a polymeric material with artificial free volume. Our methodology is based on block copolymer/homopolymer binary blend self-assembly where the membranes are made by first creating a heterogeneous film of a ABA type triblock copolymer containing a soluble homopolymer, B. Then in a second washing step the soluble homopolymer chains are dissolved away. The volume fraction of the composite membrane occupied initially by chains of homopolymer B is now converted to extra free volume in the microphase of block B. Key role of block A is to kinetically arrest the structure of the polymer during and after the washing step.

  9. Selective internalization of self-assembled artificial oil bodies by HER2/neu-positive cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiang, Chung-Jen; Lin, Li-Jen; Lin, Che-Chin; Chang, Chih-Hsiang; Chao, Yun-Peng

    2011-01-01

    A novel delivery carrier was developed using artificial oil bodies (AOBs). Plant seed oil bodies (OBs) consist of a triacylglycerol matrix surrounded by a monolayer of phospholipids embedded with the storage protein oleosin (Ole). Ole consists of a central hydrophobic domain with two amphiphatic arms that extrude from the surface of OBs. In this study, a bivalent anti-HER2/neu affibody domain (ZH2) was fused with Ole at the C terminus. After overproduction in Escherichia coli, the fusion protein (Ole-ZH2) was recovered to assemble AOBs. The size of self-assembled AOBs was tailored by varying the oil/Ole-ZH2 ratio and pH to reach a nanoscale. Upon co-incubation with tumor cells, the nanoscale AOBs encapsulated with a hydrophobic fluorescence dye were selectively internalized by HER2/neu-overexpressing cells and displayed biocompatibility with the cells. In addition, the ZH2-mediated endosomal entry of AOBs occurred in a time- and AOB dose-dependent manner. The internalization efficiency was as high as 90%. The internalized AOBs disintegrated at the non-permissive pH (e.g. in acidic endosomes) and the cargo dye was released. Results of in vitro study revealed a sustained and prolonged release profile. Taken together, our findings indicate the potential of AOBs as a delivery carrier.

  10. An enzyme-coupled artificial photosynthesis system prepared from antenna protein-mimetic tyrosyl bolaamphiphile self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Kwak, Jinyoung; Kim, Min-Chul; Lee, Sang-Yup

    2016-08-11

    An artificial photosynthesis system coupled with an enzyme was constructed using the nanospherical self-assembly of tyrosyl bolaamphiphiles, which worked as a host matrix exhibiting an antenna effect that allowed enhanced energy transfer to the ZnDPEG photosensitizer. The excited electrons from the photosensitizer were transferred to NAD+ to produce NADH, which subsequently initiated the conversion of an aldehyde to ethanol by alcohol dehydrogenase. Production of NADH and ethanol was enhanced by increasing the concentration of tyrosyl bolaamphiphiles. Spectroscopic investigations proved that the photosensitizer closely associated with the surface of the bolaamphiphile assembly through hydrogen bonds that allowed energy transfer between the host matrix and the photosensitizer. This study demonstrates that the self-assembly of bolaamphiphiles could be applicable to the construction of biomimetic energy systems exploiting biochemical activity. PMID:27480074

  11. In vitro re-hardening of artificial enamel caries lesions using enamel matrix proteins or self-assembling peptides.

    PubMed

    Schmidlin, Patrick; Zobrist, Katja; Attin, Thomas; Wegehaupt, Florian

    2016-02-01

    Objectives To assess the re-hardening potential of enamel matrix derivatives (EMD) and self-assembling peptides in vitro, hypothesizing that these materials may increase the mineralization of artificial carious lesions and improve hardness profiles. Material and Methods Forty-eight enamel samples were prepared from extracted bovine lower central incisors. After embedding and polishing, nail varnish was applied, leaving a defined test area. One third of this area was covered with a flowable composite (non-demineralized control). The remaining area was demineralized in an acidic buffer solution for 18 d to simulate a carious lesion. Half the demineralized area was then covered with composite (demineralized control), while the last third was left open for three test and one control treatments: (A) Application of enamel-matrix proteins (EMD - lyophilized protein fractions dissolved in acetic acid, Straumann), (B) self-assembling peptides (SAP, Curodont), or (C) amine fluoride solution (Am-F, GABA) for 5 min each. Untreated samples (D) served as control. After treatment, samples were immersed in artificial saliva for four weeks (remineralization phase) and microhardness (Knoop) depth profiles (25-300 µm) were obtained at sections. Two-way ANOVA was calculated to determine differences between the areas (re-hardening or softening). Results Decalcification resulted in significant softening of the subsurface enamel in all groups (A-D). A significant re-hardening up to 125 µm was observed in the EMD and SAP groups. Conclusions This study showed that EMD and SAP were able to improve the hardness profiles when applied to deep demineralized artificial lesions. However, further research is needed to verify and improve this observed effect. PMID:27008255

  12. In vitro re-hardening of artificial enamel caries lesions using enamel matrix proteins or self-assembling peptides

    PubMed Central

    Schmidlin, Patrick; Zobrist, Katja; Attin, Thomas; Wegehaupt, Florian

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Objectives To assess the re-hardening potential of enamel matrix derivatives (EMD) and self-assembling peptides in vitro, hypothesizing that these materials may increase the mineralization of artificial carious lesions and improve hardness profiles. Material and Methods Forty-eight enamel samples were prepared from extracted bovine lower central incisors. After embedding and polishing, nail varnish was applied, leaving a defined test area. One third of this area was covered with a flowable composite (non-demineralized control). The remaining area was demineralized in an acidic buffer solution for 18 d to simulate a carious lesion. Half the demineralized area was then covered with composite (demineralized control), while the last third was left open for three test and one control treatments: (A) Application of enamel-matrix proteins (EMD - lyophilized protein fractions dissolved in acetic acid, Straumann), (B) self-assembling peptides (SAP, Curodont), or (C) amine fluoride solution (Am-F, GABA) for 5 min each. Untreated samples (D) served as control. After treatment, samples were immersed in artificial saliva for four weeks (remineralization phase) and microhardness (Knoop) depth profiles (25-300 µm) were obtained at sections. Two-way ANOVA was calculated to determine differences between the areas (re-hardening or softening). Results Decalcification resulted in significant softening of the subsurface enamel in all groups (A-D). A significant re-hardening up to 125 µm was observed in the EMD and SAP groups. Conclusions This study showed that EMD and SAP were able to improve the hardness profiles when applied to deep demineralized artificial lesions. However, further research is needed to verify and improve this observed effect. PMID:27008255

  13. Self-assembled chromophores within mesoporous nanocrystalline TiO2: towards biomimetic solar cells.

    PubMed

    Marek, Peter L; Sieger, Hermann; Scherer, Torsten; Hahn, Horst; Balaban, Teodor Silviu

    2009-06-01

    Artificial light-harvesting antennas consisting of self-assembled chromophores that mimic the natural pigments of photosynthetic bacteria have been inserted into voids induced in porous titania (TiO2, anatase) in order to investigate their suitability for hybrid solar cells. Mesoporous nanocrystalline TiO2 with additional uniform macropores was treated with precursor solutions of the pigment which was then induced to self-assemble within the voids. The chromophores were tailored to combine the self-assembly characteristics of the natural bacteriochlorophylls with the robustness of artificial Zn-porphyrins being stable for prolonged periods even upon heating to over 200 degrees C. They assemble on the TiO2 surface to form nano- to micro-crystalline structures with lengths from tens of nm up to several microm and show a photosensitization effect which is supposed to be dependent on the assembly size. The natural examples of these antennas are found in green sulfur bacteria which are able to use photosynthesis in deep water regions with minute light intensities. The implementation of biomimetic antennas for light harvesting and a better photon management may lead to a rise in efficiency of dye-sensitized solar cells also under low light illumination conditions. PMID:19504907

  14. Light-harvesting dendrimers.

    PubMed

    Balzani, Vincenzo; Ceroni, Paola; Maestri, Mauro; Vicinelli, Veronica

    2003-12-01

    Dendrimers are well-defined, tree-like macromolecules, with a high degree of order and the possibility to contain selected chemical units in predetermined sites of their structure. Dendrimers are currently attracting the interest of many scientists because of their unusual chemical and physical properties and the wide range of potential applications. It is possible to design and synthesize dendrimers containing a variety of chromophoric groups organized in the dimensions of time, energy and space so as to obtain efficient light-harvesting devices that can be useful for solar energy conversion and other purposes. PMID:14644173

  15. Towards Self-Assembled Hybrid Artificial Cells: Novel Bottom-Up Approaches to Functional Synthetic Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Brea, Roberto J.; Hardy, Michael D.; Devaraj, Neal K.

    2015-01-01

    There has been increasing interest in utilizing bottom-up approaches to develop synthetic cells. A popular methodology is the integration of functionalized synthetic membranes with biological systems, producing “hybrid” artificial cells. This Concept article covers recent advances and the current state-of-the-art of such hybrid systems. Specifically, we describe minimal supramolecular constructs that faithfully mimic the structure and/or function of living cells, often by controlling the assembly of highly ordered membrane architectures with defined functionality. These studies give us a deeper understanding of the nature of living systems, bring new insights into the origin of cellular life, and provide novel synthetic chassis for advancing synthetic biology. PMID:26149747

  16. The supramolecular organization of self-assembling chlorosomal bacteriochlorophyll c, d, or e mimics

    PubMed Central

    Jochum, Tobias; Reddy, Chilla Malla; Eichhöfer, Andreas; Buth, Gernot; Szmytkowski, Jędrzej; Kalt, Heinz; Moss, David; Balaban, Teodor Silviu

    2008-01-01

    Bacteriochlorophylls (BChls) c, d, and e are the main light-harvesting pigments of green photosynthetic bacteria that self-assemble into nanostructures within the chlorosomes forming the most efficient antennas of photosynthetic organisms. All previous models of the chlorosomal antennae, which are quite controversially discussed because no single crystals could be grown so far from these organelles, involve a strong hydrogen-bonding interaction between the 31 hydroxyl group and the 131 carbonyl group. We have synthesized different self-assemblies of BChl c mimics having the same functional groups as the natural counterparts, that is, a hydroxyethyl substituent, a carbonyl group and a divalent metal atom ligated by a tetrapyrrole. These artificial BChl mimics have been shown by single crystal x-ray diffraction to form extended stacks that are packed by hydrophobic interactions and in the absence of hydrogen bonding. Time-resolved photoluminescence proves the ordered nature of the self-assembled stacks. FT-IR spectra show that on self-assembly the carbonyl frequency is shifted by ≈30 cm−1 to lower wavenumbers. From the FT-IR data we can infer the proximal interactions between the BChls in the chlorosomes consistent with a single crystal x-ray structure that shows a weak electrostatic interaction between carbonyl groups and the central zinc atom. PMID:18755898

  17. The supramolecular organization of self-assembling chlorosomal bacteriochlorophyll c, d, or e mimics.

    PubMed

    Jochum, Tobias; Reddy, Chilla Malla; Eichhöfer, Andreas; Buth, Gernot; Szmytkowski, Jedrzej; Kalt, Heinz; Moss, David; Balaban, Teodor Silviu

    2008-09-01

    Bacteriochlorophylls (BChls) c, d, and e are the main light-harvesting pigments of green photosynthetic bacteria that self-assemble into nanostructures within the chlorosomes forming the most efficient antennas of photosynthetic organisms. All previous models of the chlorosomal antennae, which are quite controversially discussed because no single crystals could be grown so far from these organelles, involve a strong hydrogen-bonding interaction between the 3(1) hydroxyl group and the 13(1) carbonyl group. We have synthesized different self-assemblies of BChl c mimics having the same functional groups as the natural counterparts, that is, a hydroxyethyl substituent, a carbonyl group and a divalent metal atom ligated by a tetrapyrrole. These artificial BChl mimics have been shown by single crystal x-ray diffraction to form extended stacks that are packed by hydrophobic interactions and in the absence of hydrogen bonding. Time-resolved photoluminescence proves the ordered nature of the self-assembled stacks. FT-IR spectra show that on self-assembly the carbonyl frequency is shifted by approximately 30 cm(-1) to lower wavenumbers. From the FT-IR data we can infer the proximal interactions between the BChls in the chlorosomes consistent with a single crystal x-ray structure that shows a weak electrostatic interaction between carbonyl groups and the central zinc atom. PMID:18755898

  18. Towards a comprehensive insight into efficient hydrogen production by self-assembled Ru(bpy)3(2+)-polymer-Pt artificial photosystems.

    PubMed

    Lin, Huan; Liu, Dan; Long, Jinlin; Zhang, Zizhong; Zhuang, Huaqiang; Zheng, Yi; Wang, Xuxu

    2015-04-28

    The role of polymers in artificial photosystems has been studied in detail. The photosystems were composed of tris(2,2'-bipyridyl) ruthenium(II) chloride as a photosensitizer (PS), colloidal Pt stabilized by polymer as a hydrogen-evolving catalyst and sodium ascorbate as an electron donor, without the addition of a traditional molecular electron mediator. Comprehensive insights into the production of hydrogen on irradiation with visible light were achieved. Several polymers, including neutral polyvinyl pyrrolidone, anionic poly(sodium 4-styrene sulfonate) and poly(acrylic acid) not only stabilized the nanoparticles, but were also effective in the production of hydrogen. Under the optimum conditions, an outstanding apparent quantum efficiency of 12.8% for the evolution of hydrogen was achieved. The formation of self-assembled and spatially separated donor-acceptor complexes via the non-covalent intermolecular interaction between PS and the polymer-Pt was pivotal in the efficient conversion of solar energy to hydrogen fuel. Important details of the photo-induced electron and energy transfer processes in the self-assembled artificial photosystems were determined by nanosecond transient absorption spectrometry and time-resolved fluorescence spectrometry. The initial step in the photo-catalytic production of hydrogen was a reductive quenching of the triplet excited state of the PS by sodium ascorbate, leading to a reduced form of PS, which could then be quickly quenched by the polymer. The rate-determining step was the electron transfer from PS to the catalyst via the polymer bridge. PMID:25811660

  19. Self-assembly of Ni-NTA-modified β-annulus peptides into artificial viral capsids and encapsulation of His-tagged proteins.

    PubMed

    Matsuura, Kazunori; Nakamura, Tomohiro; Watanabe, Kenta; Noguchi, Takanori; Minamihata, Kosuke; Kamiya, Noriho; Kimizuka, Nobuo

    2016-08-16

    β-Annulus peptides bearing Cys at the N-terminal from tomato bushy stunt virus were synthesised using a standard Fmoc-protected solid-phase method, and the peptide was modified with Ni-NTA at the N-terminal. The Ni-NTA-modified β-annulus peptide self-assembled into virus-like nanocapsules of approximately 40 nm in diameter. The critical aggregation concentration of these nanocapsules in 10 mM Tris-HCl buffer (pH 7.3) at 25 °C was 0.053 μM, which is 470 times lower than that of unmodified β-annulus peptides. Moreover, size exclusion chromatography of the peptide assembly indicated encapsulation of His-tagged green fluorescent protein in the Ni-NTA-modified artificial viral capsid. PMID:27386944

  20. Self-assembled lipid bilayer materials

    DOEpatents

    Sasaki, Darryl Y.; Waggoner, Tina A.; Last, Julie A.

    2005-11-08

    The present invention is a self-assembling material comprised of stacks of lipid bilayers formed in a columnar structure, where the assembly process is mediated and regulated by chemical recognition events. The material, through the chemical recognition interactions, has a self-regulating system that corrects the radial size of the assembly creating a uniform diameter throughout most of the structure. The materials form and are stable in aqueous solution. These materials are useful as structural elements for the architecture of materials and components in nanotechnology, efficient light harvesting systems for optical sensing, chemical processing centers, and drug delivery vehicles.

  1. The chlorosome: a prototype for efficient light harvesting in photosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Oostergetel, Gert T; van Amerongen, Herbert; Boekema, Egbert J

    2010-06-01

    Three phyla of bacteria include phototrophs that contain unique antenna systems, chlorosomes, as the principal light-harvesting apparatus. Chlorosomes are the largest known supramolecular antenna systems and contain hundreds of thousands of BChl c/d/e molecules enclosed by a single membrane leaflet and a baseplate. The BChl pigments are organized via self-assembly and do not require proteins to provide a scaffold for efficient light harvesting. Their excitation energy flows via a small protein, CsmA embedded in the baseplate to the photosynthetic reaction centres. Chlorosomes allow for photosynthesis at very low light intensities by ultra-rapid transfer of excitations to reaction centres and enable organisms with chlorosomes to live at extraordinarily low light intensities under which no other phototrophic organisms can grow. This article reviews several aspects of chlorosomes: the supramolecular and molecular organizations and the light-harvesting and spectroscopic properties. In addition, it provides some novel information about the organization of the baseplate. PMID:20130996

  2. The chlorosome: a prototype for efficient light harvesting in photosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Oostergetel, Gert T.; van Amerongen, Herbert

    2010-01-01

    Three phyla of bacteria include phototrophs that contain unique antenna systems, chlorosomes, as the principal light-harvesting apparatus. Chlorosomes are the largest known supramolecular antenna systems and contain hundreds of thousands of BChl c/d/e molecules enclosed by a single membrane leaflet and a baseplate. The BChl pigments are organized via self-assembly and do not require proteins to provide a scaffold for efficient light harvesting. Their excitation energy flows via a small protein, CsmA embedded in the baseplate to the photosynthetic reaction centres. Chlorosomes allow for photosynthesis at very low light intensities by ultra-rapid transfer of excitations to reaction centres and enable organisms with chlorosomes to live at extraordinarily low light intensities under which no other phototrophic organisms can grow. This article reviews several aspects of chlorosomes: the supramolecular and molecular organizations and the light-harvesting and spectroscopic properties. In addition, it provides some novel information about the organization of the baseplate. PMID:20130996

  3. A switchable self-assembling and disassembling chiral system based on a porphyrin-substituted phenylalanine-phenylalanine motif.

    PubMed

    Charalambidis, Georgios; Georgilis, Evangelos; Panda, Manas K; Anson, Christopher E; Powell, Annie K; Doyle, Stephen; Moss, David; Jochum, Tobias; Horton, Peter N; Coles, Simon J; Linares, Mathieu; Beljonne, David; Naubron, Jean-Valère; Conradt, Jonas; Kalt, Heinz; Mitraki, Anna; Coutsolelos, Athanassios G; Balaban, Teodor Silviu

    2016-01-01

    Artificial light-harvesting systems have until now not been able to self-assemble into structures with a large photon capture cross-section that upon a stimulus reversibly can switch into an inactive state. Here we describe a simple and robust FLFL-dipeptide construct to which a meso-tetraphenylporphyrin has been appended and which self-assembles to fibrils, platelets or nanospheres depending on the solvent composition. The fibrils, functioning as quenched antennas, give intense excitonic couplets in the electronic circular dichroism spectra which are mirror imaged if the unnatural FDFD-analogue is used. By slightly increasing the solvent polarity, these light-harvesting fibres disassemble to spherical structures with silent electronic circular dichroism spectra but which fluoresce. Upon further dilution with the nonpolar solvent, the intense Cotton effects are recovered, thus proving a reversible switching. A single crystal X-ray structure shows a head-to-head arrangement of porphyrins that explains both their excitonic coupling and quenched fluorescence. PMID:27582363

  4. Semiconducting nanowires from hairpin-shaped self-assembling sexithiophenes.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Wei-Wen; Tevis, Ian D; Tayi, Alok S; Cui, Honggang; Stupp, Samuel I

    2010-11-18

    Conjugated organic molecules can be designed to self-assemble from solution into nanostructures for functions such as charge transport, light emission, or light harvesting. We report here the design and synthesis of a novel hairpin-shaped self-assembling molecule containing electronically active sexithiophene moieties. In several nonpolar organic solvents, such as toluene or chlorocyclohexane, this compound was found to form organogels composed of nanofibers with uniform diameters of 3.0 (±0.3) nm. NMR analysis and spectroscopic measurements revealed that the self-assembly is driven by π-π interactions of the sexithiophene moieties and hydrogen bonding among the amide groups at the head of the hairpin. Field effect transistors built with this molecule revealed p-type semiconducting behavior and higher hole mobilities when films were cast from solvents that promote self-assembly. We propose that hydrogen bonding and π-π stacking act synergistically to create ordered stacking of sexithiophene moieties, thus providing an efficient pathway for charge carriers within the nanowires. The nanostructures formed exhibit unusually broad absorbance in their UV-vis spectrum, which we attribute to the coexistence of both H and J aggregates from face-to-face π-π stacking of sexithiophene moieties and hierarchical bundling of the nanowires. The large absorption range associated with self-assembly of the hairpin molecules makes them potentially useful in light harvesting for energy applications. PMID:20698523

  5. Biohybrid photosynthetic antenna complexes for enhanced light-harvesting.

    PubMed

    Springer, Joseph W; Parkes-Loach, Pamela S; Reddy, Kanumuri Ramesh; Krayer, Michael; Jiao, Jieying; Lee, Gregory M; Niedzwiedzki, Dariusz M; Harris, Michelle A; Kirmaier, Christine; Bocian, David F; Lindsey, Jonathan S; Holten, Dewey; Loach, Paul A

    2012-03-14

    Biohybrid antenna systems have been constructed that contain synthetic chromophores attached to 31mer analogues of the bacterial photosynthetic core light-harvesting (LH1) β-polypeptide. The peptides are engineered with a Cys site for bioconjugation with maleimide-terminated chromophores, which include synthetic bacteriochlorins (BC1, BC2) with strong near-infrared absorption and commercial dyes Oregon green (OGR) and rhodamine red (RR) with strong absorption in the blue-green to yellow-orange regions. The peptides place the Cys 14 (or 6) residues before a native His site that binds bacteriochlorophyll a (BChl-a) and, like the native LH proteins, have high helical content as probed by single-reflection IR spectroscopy. The His residue associates with BChl-a as in the native LH1 β-polypeptide to form dimeric ββ-subunit complexes [31mer(-14Cys)X/BChl](2), where X is one of the synthetic chromophores. The native-like BChl-a dimer has Q(y) absorption at 820 nm and serves as the acceptor for energy from light absorbed by the appended synthetic chromophore. The energy-transfer characteristics of biohybrid complexes have been characterized by steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence and absorption measurements. The quantum yields of energy transfer from a synthetic chromophore located 14 residues from the BChl-coordinating His site are as follows: OGR (0.30) < RR (0.60) < BC2 (0.90). Oligomeric assemblies of the subunit complexes [31mer(-14Cys)X/BChl](n) are accompanied by a bathochromic shift of the Q(y) absorption of the BChl-a oligomer as far as the 850-nm position found in cyclic native photosynthetic LH2 complexes. Room-temperature stabilized oligomeric biohybrids have energy-transfer quantum yields comparable to those of the dimeric subunit complexes as follows: OGR (0.20) < RR (0.80) < BC1 (0.90). Thus, the new biohybrid antennas retain the energy-transfer and self-assembly characteristics of the native antenna complexes, offer enhanced coverage of the solar

  6. Biogenesis of light harvesting proteins.

    PubMed

    Dall'Osto, Luca; Bressan, Mauro; Bassi, Roberto

    2015-09-01

    The LHC family includes nuclear-encoded, integral thylakoid membrane proteins, most of which coordinate chlorophyll and xanthophyll chromophores. By assembling with the core complexes of both photosystems, LHCs form a flexible peripheral moiety for enhancing light-harvesting cross-section, regulating its efficiency and providing protection against photo-oxidative stress. Upon its first appearance, LHC proteins underwent evolutionary diversification into a large protein family with a complex genetic redundancy. Such differentiation appears as a crucial event in the adaptation of photosynthetic organisms to changing environmental conditions and land colonization. The structure of photosystems, including nuclear- and chloroplast-encoded subunits, presented the cell with a number of challenges for the control of the light harvesting function. Indeed, LHC-encoding messages are translated in the cytosol, and pre-proteins imported into the chloroplast, processed to their mature size and targeted to the thylakoids where are assembled with chromophores. Thus, a tight coordination between nuclear and plastid gene expression, in response to environmental stimuli, is required to adjust LHC composition during photoacclimation. In recent years, remarkable progress has been achieved in elucidating structure, function and regulatory pathways involving LHCs; however, a number of molecular details still await elucidation. In this review, we will provide an overview on the current knowledge on LHC biogenesis, ranging from organization of pigment-protein complexes to the modulation of gene expression, import and targeting to the photosynthetic membranes, and regulation of LHC assembly and turnover. Genes controlling these events are potential candidate for biotechnological applications aimed at optimizing light use efficiency of photosynthetic organisms. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Chloroplast biogenesis. PMID:25687893

  7. OligArch: A software tool to allow artificially expanded genetic information systems (AEGIS) to guide the autonomous self-assembly of long DNA constructs from multiple DNA single strands

    PubMed Central

    Bradley, Kevin M

    2014-01-01

    Summary Synthetic biologists wishing to self-assemble large DNA (L-DNA) constructs from small DNA fragments made by automated synthesis need fragments that hybridize predictably. Such predictability is difficult to obtain with nucleotides built from just the four standard nucleotides. Natural DNA's peculiar combination of strong and weak G:C and A:T pairs, the context-dependence of the strengths of those pairs, unimolecular strand folding that competes with desired interstrand hybridization, and non-Watson–Crick interactions available to standard DNA, all contribute to this unpredictability. In principle, adding extra nucleotides to the genetic alphabet can improve the predictability and reliability of autonomous DNA self-assembly, simply by increasing the information density of oligonucleotide sequences. These extra nucleotides are now available as parts of artificially expanded genetic information systems (AEGIS), and tools are now available to generate entirely standard DNA from AEGIS DNA during PCR amplification. Here, we describe the OligArch (for "oligonucleotide architecting") software, an application that permits synthetic biologists to engineer optimally self-assembling DNA constructs from both six- and eight-letter AEGIS alphabets. This software has been used to design oligonucleotides that self-assemble to form complete genes from 20 or more single-stranded synthetic oligonucleotides. OligArch is therefore a key element of a scalable and integrated infrastructure for the rapid and designed engineering of biology. PMID:25161743

  8. Principles of light harvesting from single photosynthetic complexes

    PubMed Central

    Schlau-Cohen, G. S.

    2015-01-01

    Photosynthetic systems harness sunlight to power most life on Earth. In the initial steps of photosynthetic light harvesting, absorbed energy is converted to chemical energy with near-unity quantum efficiency. This is achieved by an efficient, directional and regulated flow of energy through a network of proteins. Here, we discuss the following three key principles of this flow and of photosynthetic light harvesting: thermal fluctuations of the protein structure; intrinsic conformational switches with defined functional consequences; and environmentally triggered conformational switches. Through these principles, photosynthetic systems balance two types of operational costs: metabolic costs, or the cost of maintaining and running the molecular machinery, and opportunity costs, or the cost of losing any operational time. Understanding how the molecular machinery and dynamics are designed to balance these costs may provide a blueprint for improved artificial light-harvesting devices. With a multi-disciplinary approach combining knowledge of biology, this blueprint could lead to low-cost and more effective solar energy conversion. Photosynthetic systems achieve widespread light harvesting across the Earth's surface; in the face of our growing energy needs, this is functionality we need to replicate, and perhaps emulate. PMID:26052423

  9. Principles of light harvesting from single photosynthetic complexes.

    PubMed

    Schlau-Cohen, G S

    2015-06-01

    Photosynthetic systems harness sunlight to power most life on Earth. In the initial steps of photosynthetic light harvesting, absorbed energy is converted to chemical energy with near-unity quantum efficiency. This is achieved by an efficient, directional and regulated flow of energy through a network of proteins. Here, we discuss the following three key principles of this flow and of photosynthetic light harvesting: thermal fluctuations of the protein structure; intrinsic conformational switches with defined functional consequences; and environmentally triggered conformational switches. Through these principles, photosynthetic systems balance two types of operational costs: metabolic costs, or the cost of maintaining and running the molecular machinery, and opportunity costs, or the cost of losing any operational time. Understanding how the molecular machinery and dynamics are designed to balance these costs may provide a blueprint for improved artificial light-harvesting devices. With a multi-disciplinary approach combining knowledge of biology, this blueprint could lead to low-cost and more effective solar energy conversion. Photosynthetic systems achieve widespread light harvesting across the Earth's surface; in the face of our growing energy needs, this is functionality we need to replicate, and perhaps emulate. PMID:26052423

  10. Controlling Light Harvesting with Light.

    PubMed

    Gwizdala, Michal; Berera, Rudi; Kirilovsky, Diana; van Grondelle, Rienk; Krüger, Tjaart P J

    2016-09-14

    When exposed to intense sunlight, all organisms performing oxygenic photosynthesis implement various photoprotective strategies to prevent potentially lethal photodamage. The rapidly responding photoprotective mechanisms, occurring in the light-harvesting pigment-protein antennae, take effect within tens of seconds, while the dramatic and potentially harmful light intensity fluctuations manifest also on shorter time scales. Here we show that, upon illumination, individual phycobilisomes from Synechocystis PCC 6803, which, in vivo under low-light conditions, harvest solar energy, and have the built-in capacity to switch rapidly and reversibly into light-activated energy-dissipating states. Simultaneously measured fluorescence intensity, lifetime, and spectra, compared with a multicompartmental kinetic model, revealed that essentially any subunit of a phycobilisome can be quenched, and that the core complexes were targeted most frequently. Our results provide the first evidence for fluorescence blinking from a biologically active system at physiological light intensities and suggest that the light-controlled switches to intrinsically available energy-dissipating states are responsible for a novel type of photoprotection in cyanobacteria. We anticipate other photosynthetic organisms to employ similar strategies to respond instantly to rapid solar light intensity fluctuations. A detailed understanding of the photophysics of photosynthetic antenna complexes is of great interest for bioinspired solar energy technologies. PMID:27546794

  11. Optimal Energy Transfer in Light-Harvesting Systems.

    PubMed

    Chen, Lipeng; Shenai, Prathamesh; Zheng, Fulu; Somoza, Alejandro; Zhao, Yang

    2015-01-01

    Photosynthesis is one of the most essential biological processes in which specialized pigment-protein complexes absorb solar photons, and with a remarkably high efficiency, guide the photo-induced excitation energy toward the reaction center to subsequently trigger its conversion to chemical energy. In this work, we review the principles of optimal energy transfer in various natural and artificial light harvesting systems. We begin by presenting the guiding principles for optimizing the energy transfer efficiency in systems connected to dissipative environments, with particular attention paid to the potential role of quantum coherence in light harvesting systems. We will comment briefly on photo-protective mechanisms in natural systems that ensure optimal functionality under varying ambient conditions. For completeness, we will also present an overview of the charge separation and electron transfer pathways in reaction centers. Finally, recent theoretical and experimental progress on excitation energy transfer, charge separation, and charge transport in artificial light harvesting systems is delineated, with organic solar cells taken as prime examples. PMID:26307957

  12. Self-assembling RNA square

    SciTech Connect

    Dibrov, Sergey M.; McLean, Jaime; Parsons, Jerod; Hermann, Thomas

    2011-12-22

    The three-dimensional structures of noncoding RNA molecules reveal recurring architectural motifs that have been exploited for the design of artificial RNA nanomaterials. Programmed assembly of RNA nanoobjects from autonomously folding tetraloop-receptor complexes as well as junction motifs has been achieved previously through sequence-directed hybridization of complex sets of long oligonucleotides. Due to size and complexity, structural characterization of artificial RNA nanoobjects has been limited to low-resolution microscopy studies. Here we present the design, construction, and crystal structure determination at 2.2 {angstrom} of the smallest yet square-shaped nanoobject made entirely of double-stranded RNA. The RNA square is comprised of 100 residues and self-assembles from four copies each of two oligonucleotides of 10 and 15 bases length. Despite the high symmetry on the level of secondary structure, the three-dimensional architecture of the square is asymmetric, with all four corners adopting distinct folding patterns. We demonstrate the programmed self-assembly of RNA squares from complex mixtures of corner units and establish a concept to exploit the RNA square as a combinatorial nanoscale platform.

  13. Self assembling proteins

    DOEpatents

    Yeates, Todd O.; Padilla, Jennifer; Colovos, Chris

    2004-06-29

    Novel fusion proteins capable of self-assembling into regular structures, as well as nucleic acids encoding the same, are provided. The subject fusion proteins comprise at least two oligomerization domains rigidly linked together, e.g. through an alpha helical linking group. Also provided are regular structures comprising a plurality of self-assembled fusion proteins of the subject invention, and methods for producing the same. The subject fusion proteins find use in the preparation of a variety of nanostructures, where such structures include: cages, shells, double-layer rings, two-dimensional layers, three-dimensional crystals, filaments, and tubes.

  14. Self-assembly of fluorescent carbon dots in a N,N-dimethylmethanamide solution via Schiff base reaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Shengliang; Ding, Yanli; Chang, Qing; Trinchi, Adrian; Lin, Kui; Yang, Jinlong; Liu, Jun

    2015-02-01

    The transition from nanoparticles suspended in aqueous solutions into solid fluorescent structures is developed for application in solid functional devices. The presented approach enables the organization of carbon dots into rod-like shapes that can still be re-dispersed into aqueous solution. Schiff bases forming at the surface of carbon dots not only protect their surface states, but also provide sites for tethering to other carbon dots. As a consequence, the large assemblies of CDs can come together to form regular, well ordered structures whilst still maintaining their photoluminescence properties. This opens up enormous possibilities for device manufacture, as these self-assemblies could be grown or grafted onto templates forming regular structures, and find innumerable applications ranging from optoelectronic devices, light harvesting to artificial photosynthesis.The transition from nanoparticles suspended in aqueous solutions into solid fluorescent structures is developed for application in solid functional devices. The presented approach enables the organization of carbon dots into rod-like shapes that can still be re-dispersed into aqueous solution. Schiff bases forming at the surface of carbon dots not only protect their surface states, but also provide sites for tethering to other carbon dots. As a consequence, the large assemblies of CDs can come together to form regular, well ordered structures whilst still maintaining their photoluminescence properties. This opens up enormous possibilities for device manufacture, as these self-assemblies could be grown or grafted onto templates forming regular structures, and find innumerable applications ranging from optoelectronic devices, light harvesting to artificial photosynthesis. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: Experimental details and more characterization of carbon dot assemblies. See DOI: 10.1039/c4nr07119k

  15. Photovoltaic self-assembly.

    SciTech Connect

    Lavin, Judith; Kemp, Richard Alan; Stewart, Constantine A.

    2010-10-01

    This late-start LDRD was focused on the application of chemical principles of self-assembly on the ordering and placement of photovoltaic cells in a module. The drive for this chemical-based self-assembly stems from the escalating prices in the 'pick-and-place' technology currently used in the MEMS industries as the size of chips decreases. The chemical self-assembly principles are well-known on a molecular scale in other material science systems but to date had not been applied to the assembly of cells in a photovoltaic array or module. We explored several types of chemical-based self-assembly techniques, including gold-thiol interactions, liquid polymer binding, and hydrophobic-hydrophilic interactions designed to array both Si and GaAs PV chips onto a substrate. Additional research was focused on the modification of PV cells in an effort to gain control over the facial directionality of the cells in a solvent-based environment. Despite being a small footprint research project worked on for only a short time, the technical results and scientific accomplishments were significant and could prove to be enabling technology in the disruptive advancement of the microelectronic photovoltaics industry.

  16. Modeling Protein Self Assembly

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, William P.; Jones, Carleton Buck; Hull, Elizabeth

    2004-01-01

    Understanding the structure and function of proteins is an important part of the standards-based science curriculum. Proteins serve vital roles within the cell and malfunctions in protein self assembly are implicated in degenerative diseases. Experience indicates that this topic is a difficult one for many students. We have found that the concept…

  17. PS2013 Satellite Workshop on Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Niederman, Robert A.; Blankenship, Robert E.; Frank, Harry A.

    2015-02-07

    These funds were used for partial support of the PS2013 Satellite Workshop on Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Systems, that was held on 8-11 August, 2013, at Washington University, St. Louis, MO. This conference, held in conjunction with the 16th International Congress on Photosynthesis/St. Louis, continued a long tradition of light-harvesting satellite conferences that have been held prior to the previous six international photosynthesis congresses. In this Workshop, the basis was explored for the current interest in replacing fossil fuels with energy sources derived form direct solar radiation, coupled with light-driven electron transport in natural photosynthetic systems and how they offer a valuable blueprint for conversion of sunlight to useful energy forms. This was accomplished through sessions on the initial light-harvesting events in the biological conversion of solar energy to chemically stored energy forms, and how these natural photosynthetic processes serve as a guide to the development of robust bio-hybrid and artificial systems for solar energy conversion into both electricity or chemical fuels. Organized similar to a Gordon Research Conference, a lively, informal and collegial setting was established, highlighting the exchange of exciting new data and unpublished results from ongoing studies. A significant amount of time was set aside for open discussion and interactive poster sessions, with a special session devoted to oral presentations by talented students and postdoctoral fellows judged to have the best posters. This area of research has seen exceptionally rapid progress in recent years, with the availability of a number of antenna protein structures at atomic resolution, elucidation of the molecular surface architecture of native photosynthetic membranes by atomic force microscopy and the maturing of ultrafast spectroscopic and molecular biological techniques for the investigation and manipulation of photosynthetic systems. The conferees

  18. Self-assembled gelators for organic electronics.

    PubMed

    Babu, Sukumaran Santhosh; Prasanthkumar, Seelam; Ajayaghosh, Ayyappanpillai

    2012-02-20

    Nature excels at engineering materials by using the principles of chemical synthesis and molecular self-assembly with the help of noncovalent forces. Learning from these phenomena, scientists have been able to create a variety of self-assembled artificial materials of different size, shapes, and properties for wide ranging applications. An area of great interest in this regard is solvent-assisted gel formation with functional organic molecules, thus leading to one-dimensional fibers. Such fibers have improved electronic properties and are potential soft materials for organic electronic devices, particularly in bulk heterojunction solar cells. Described herein is how molecular self-assembly, which was originally proposed as a simple laboratory curiosity, has helped the evolution of a variety of soft functional materials useful for advanced electronic devices such as organic field-effect transistors and organic solar cells. Highlights on some of the recent developments are discussed. PMID:22278754

  19. Programming Light-Harvesting Efficiency Using DNA Origami

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The remarkable performance and quantum efficiency of biological light-harvesting complexes has prompted a multidisciplinary interest in engineering biologically inspired antenna systems as a possible route to novel solar cell technologies. Key to the effectiveness of biological “nanomachines” in light capture and energy transport is their highly ordered nanoscale architecture of photoactive molecules. Recently, DNA origami has emerged as a powerful tool for organizing multiple chromophores with base-pair accuracy and full geometric freedom. Here, we present a programmable antenna array on a DNA origami platform that enables the implementation of rationally designed antenna structures. We systematically analyze the light-harvesting efficiency with respect to number of donors and interdye distances of a ring-like antenna using ensemble and single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy and detailed Förster modeling. This comprehensive study demonstrates exquisite and reliable structural control over multichromophoric geometries and points to DNA origami as highly versatile platform for testing design concepts in artificial light-harvesting networks. PMID:26906456

  20. Programming Light-Harvesting Efficiency Using DNA Origami.

    PubMed

    Hemmig, Elisa A; Creatore, Celestino; Wünsch, Bettina; Hecker, Lisa; Mair, Philip; Parker, M Andy; Emmott, Stephen; Tinnefeld, Philip; Keyser, Ulrich F; Chin, Alex W

    2016-04-13

    The remarkable performance and quantum efficiency of biological light-harvesting complexes has prompted a multidisciplinary interest in engineering biologically inspired antenna systems as a possible route to novel solar cell technologies. Key to the effectiveness of biological "nanomachines" in light capture and energy transport is their highly ordered nanoscale architecture of photoactive molecules. Recently, DNA origami has emerged as a powerful tool for organizing multiple chromophores with base-pair accuracy and full geometric freedom. Here, we present a programmable antenna array on a DNA origami platform that enables the implementation of rationally designed antenna structures. We systematically analyze the light-harvesting efficiency with respect to number of donors and interdye distances of a ring-like antenna using ensemble and single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy and detailed Förster modeling. This comprehensive study demonstrates exquisite and reliable structural control over multichromophoric geometries and points to DNA origami as highly versatile platform for testing design concepts in artificial light-harvesting networks. PMID:26906456

  1. A srikaya-like light-harvesting antenna based on graphene quantum dots and porphyrin unimolecular micelles.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yannan; Li, Shanlong; Li, Ke; Zheng, Yongli; Zhang, Meng; Cai, Caiyun; Yu, Chunyang; Zhou, Yongfeng; Yan, Deyue

    2016-07-19

    A novel hybrid light-harvesting antenna with a srikaya-like structure of multi-graphene quantum dots (GQDs) as donors and one porphyrin unimolecular micelle as the acceptor was constructed through electrostatic self-assembly. The constructed antenna showed a high energy transfer efficiency of up to 93.6% and an antenna effect of 7.3 in an aqueous solution. PMID:27374891

  2. A novel artificial nerve graft for repairing long-distance sciatic nerve defects: a self-assembling peptide nanofiber scaffold-containing poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) conduit

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xianghai; Pan, Mengjie; Wen, Jinkun; Tang, Yinjuan; Hamilton, Audra D.; Li, Yuanyuan; Qian, Changhui; Liu, Zhongying; Wu, Wutian; Guo, Jiasong

    2014-01-01

    In this study, we developed a novel artificial nerve graft termed self-assembling peptide nanofiber scaffold (SAPNS)-containing poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) conduit (SPC) and used it to bridge a 10-mm-long sciatic nerve defect in the rat. Retrograde tracing, behavioral testing and histomorphometric analyses showed that compared with the empty PLGA conduit implantation group, the SPC implantation group had a larger number of growing and extending axons, a markedly increased diameter of regenerated axons and a greater thickness of the myelin sheath in the conduit. Furthermore, there was an increase in the size of the neuromuscular junction and myofiber diameter in the target muscle. These findings suggest that the novel artificial SPC nerve graft can promote axonal regeneration and remyelination in the transected peripheral nerve and can be used for repairing peripheral nerve injury. PMID:25657734

  3. A novel artificial nerve graft for repairing long-distance sciatic nerve defects: a self-assembling peptide nanofiber scaffold-containing poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) conduit.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xianghai; Pan, Mengjie; Wen, Jinkun; Tang, Yinjuan; Hamilton, Audra D; Li, Yuanyuan; Qian, Changhui; Liu, Zhongying; Wu, Wutian; Guo, Jiasong

    2014-12-15

    In this study, we developed a novel artificial nerve graft termed self-assembling peptide nanofiber scaffold (SAPNS)-containing poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) conduit (SPC) and used it to bridge a 10-mm-long sciatic nerve defect in the rat. Retrograde tracing, behavioral testing and histomorphometric analyses showed that compared with the empty PLGA conduit implantation group, the SPC implantation group had a larger number of growing and extending axons, a markedly increased diameter of regenerated axons and a greater thickness of the myelin sheath in the conduit. Furthermore, there was an increase in the size of the neuromuscular junction and myofiber diameter in the target muscle. These findings suggest that the novel artificial SPC nerve graft can promote axonal regeneration and remyelination in the transected peripheral nerve and can be used for repairing peripheral nerve injury. PMID:25657734

  4. Functionalized Nanoparticles and Surfaces for Controlled Chemical Catalysis and Effective Light Harvesting

    SciTech Connect

    Marye Anne Fox, James K. Whitesell

    2012-11-02

    We have prepared a range of such arrays as key components for biotechnology and photonic applications. These involve self-assembled arrays of increasing complexity with three-dimensionally disposed multilayer interactions. These arrays also include dendrimers as the distinguishing structural building blocks. These photoactive integrated systems have a regular, highly-branched, three-dimensional architecture. Structural modifications of these units include variation of the core, bridging layers, and terminal groups. These modifications result in a large array of dendritic molecules with potential applications for light harvesting.

  5. Nanopropulsion by biocatalytic self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Leckie, Joy; Hope, Alexander; Hughes, Meghan; Debnath, Sisir; Fleming, Scott; Wark, Alastair W; Ulijn, Rein V; Haw, Mark D

    2014-09-23

    A number of organisms and organelles are capable of self-propulsion at the micro- and nanoscales. Production of simple man-made mimics of biological transportation systems may prove relevant to achieving movement in artificial cells and nano/micronscale robotics that may be of biological and nanotechnological importance. We demonstrate the propulsion of particles based on catalytically controlled molecular self-assembly and fiber formation at the particle surface. Specifically, phosphatase enzymes (acting as the engine) are conjugated to a quantum dot (the vehicle), and are subsequently exposed to micellar aggregates (fuel) that upon biocatalytic dephosphorylation undergo fibrillar self-assembly, which in turn causes propulsion. The motion of individual enzyme/quantum dot conjugates is followed directly using fluorescence microscopy. While overall movement remains random, the enzyme-conjugates exhibit significantly faster transport in the presence of the fiber forming system, compared to controls without fuel, a non-self-assembling substrate, or a substrate which assembles into spherical, rather than fibrous structures upon enzymatic dephosphorylation. When increasing the concentration of the fiber-forming fuel, the speed of the conjugates increases compared to non-self-assembling substrate, although directionality remains random. PMID:25162764

  6. [INVITED] Self-assembled optical metamaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baron, Alexandre; Aradian, Ashod; Ponsinet, Virginie; Barois, Philippe

    2016-08-01

    Self-assembled metamaterials constitute a promising platform to achieving bulk and homogenous optical materials that exhibit unusual effective medium properties. For many years now, the research community has contemplated lithographically fabricated metasurfaces, with extraordinary optical features. However, achieving large volumes at low cost is still a challenge by top-down fabrication. Bottom-up fabrication, that relies both on nanochemistry and self-assembly, is capable of building such materials while greatly reducing the energy footprint in the formulation of the metamaterial. Self-assembled metamaterials have shown that they are capable of reaching unprecedented values of bulkiness and homogeneity figures of merit. This feat is achieved by synthesizing plasmonic nanoresonators (meta-atoms in the sense of artificial polarizable units) and assembling them into a fully three-dimensional matrix through a variety of methods. Furthermore it has been shown that a wide range of material parameters can be tailored by controlling the geometry and composition of the meta-atoms as well as the volume fraction of the nano-objects in the metamaterial. Here we conduct a non-comprehensive review of some of the recent trends in self-assembled optical metamaterials and illustrate these trends with our recent work.

  7. Artificial and self-assembled vortex-pinning centers in superconducting Ba(Fe1-xCox)2As2 thin films as a route to obtaining very high critical-current densities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tarantini, C.; Lee, S.; Kametani, F.; Jiang, J.; Weiss, J. D.; Jaroszynski, J.; Folkman, C. M.; Hellstrom, E. E.; Eom, C. B.; Larbalestier, D. C.

    2012-12-01

    We report on the superior vortex pinning of single- and multilayer Ba(Fe1-xCox)2As2 thin films with self-assembled c-axis and artificially introduced ab-plane pins. Ba(Fe1-xCox)2As2 can accept a very high density of pins (15-20 vol %) without Tc suppression. The matching field is greater than 12 T, producing a significant enhancement of the critical current density Jc, an almost isotropic Jc(θ, 20 T) > 105 A/cm2, and global pinning force density Fp of ˜50 GN/m3. This scenario strongly differs from the high-temperature superconducting cuprates where the addition of pins without Tc suppression is limited to 2-4 vol %, leading to small HIrr enhancements and improved Jc only below 3-5 T.

  8. Photosynthetic light harvesting: excitons and coherence

    PubMed Central

    Fassioli, Francesca; Dinshaw, Rayomond; Arpin, Paul C.; Scholes, Gregory D.

    2014-01-01

    Photosynthesis begins with light harvesting, where specialized pigment–protein complexes transform sunlight into electronic excitations delivered to reaction centres to initiate charge separation. There is evidence that quantum coherence between electronic excited states plays a role in energy transfer. In this review, we discuss how quantum coherence manifests in photosynthetic light harvesting and its implications. We begin by examining the concept of an exciton, an excited electronic state delocalized over several spatially separated molecules, which is the most widely available signature of quantum coherence in light harvesting. We then discuss recent results concerning the possibility that quantum coherence between electronically excited states of donors and acceptors may give rise to a quantum coherent evolution of excitations, modifying the traditional incoherent picture of energy transfer. Key to this (partially) coherent energy transfer appears to be the structure of the environment, in particular the participation of non-equilibrium vibrational modes. We discuss the open questions and controversies regarding quantum coherent energy transfer and how these can be addressed using new experimental techniques. PMID:24352671

  9. Self-Assembling Hydrogel Scaffolds for Photocatalytic Hydrogen Production

    PubMed Central

    Weingarten, Adam S.; Kazantsev, Roman V.; Palmer, Liam C.; McClendon, Mark; Koltonow, Andrew R.; Samuel, Amanda P. S.; Kiebala, Derek J.; Wasielewski, Michael R.; Stupp, Samuel I.

    2015-01-01

    catalysts for water oxidation and proton reduction3-7. In other recent work, catalysts have been coupled to light absorbing CdSe quantum dots8, Si microrods9, and organic dyes10,11 to create artificial photosynthetic systems. Also functional devices capable of performing water-splitting and fuel-generating reactions using earth-abundant resources have been demonstrated12. The development of bionspired soft materials that can be shaped into forms and integrate light-harvesting, charge transport, and catalytic functions to produce solar fuels is an obvious gap. This gap can be addressed through self-assembly strategies for materials in which a bottom-up approach fine tunes all functional aspects of a catalytic system13. Organic systems may have shorter lifetimes than their inorganic counterparts, but could have their own niche in sustainable energy given their soft matter nature and low energy requirements for production. We report here on a strategy to create supramolecular hydrogels that integrate both light-absorbing chromophores and catalysts into a material for light-driven hydrogen (H2) production. Our work here is focused only on the supramolecular chemistry necessary to create a formable catalytic material and therefore does not explore its possible integration into a photocathode that would not require a sacrificial electron donor. We designed a charged amphiphilic chromophore with the capacity to self-assemble into supramolecular polymers via hydrophobic collapse. At sufficiently high concentrations and under electrostatic screening conditions, charged supramolecular polymers can easily produce a three-dimensional network that takes the form of a gel. These networks could be highly hydrated and host the soluble components necessary to produce the solar fuel. At the same time, much like natural photosynthetic antennae, supramolecular structures of conjugated molecules formed through π orbital overlap should have the capacity to absorb light, split excitons, and

  10. Solid-state NMR applied to photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Pandit, Anjali; de Groot, Huub J M

    2012-03-01

    This short review describes how solid-state NMR has provided a mechanistic and electronic picture of pigment-protein and pigment-pigment interactions in photosynthetic antenna complexes. NMR results on purple bacterial antenna complexes show how the packing of the protein and the pigments inside the light-harvesting oligomers induces mutual conformational stress. The protein scaffold produces deformation and electrostatic polarization of the BChl macrocycles and leads to a partial electronic charge transfer between the BChls and their coordinating histidines, which can tune the light-harvesting function. In chlorosome antennae assemblies, the NMR template structure reveals how the chromophores can direct their self-assembly into higher macrostructures which, in turn, tune the light-harvesting properties of the individual molecules by controlling their disorder, structural deformation, and electronic polarization without the need for a protein scaffold. These results pave the way for addressing the next challenge, which is to resolve the functional conformational dynamics of the lhc antennae of oxygenic species that allows them to switch between light-emitting and light-energy dissipating states. PMID:21842288

  11. Accessing exciton transport in light-harvesting structures with plasmonic nanotip

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saikin, Semion K.; Feist, Johannes; Homer Reid, M. T.; Lukin, Mikhail D.; Aspuru-Guzik, Alan

    2012-02-01

    Natural light-harvesting complexes, such as that of plant cells or photosynthetic bacteria, are considered as possible prototypes for artificially designed solar cell materials. In these structures the energy of light absorbed by a peripheral antenna is transmitted very efficiently in a form of excitons to a reaction center. Usually, information about the exciton transport is obtained from time-resolved nonlinear optical experiments where the frequencies of a pump and a probe fields select particular electronic transitions in the light-harvesting complex. We explore a complimentary setup utilizing a plasmonic nanotip as a local sub-wavelength probe of excitation dynamics. As specific examples we consider an LHII complex involved in the light-harvesting process of purple bacteria and a Fenna-Matthews-Olson pigment-protein complex of green-sulphur bacteria.

  12. Light-Harvesting Systems Based on Organic Nanocrystals To Mimic Chlorosomes.

    PubMed

    Chen, Peng-Zhong; Weng, Yu-Xiang; Niu, Li-Ya; Chen, Yu-Zhe; Wu, Li-Zhu; Tung, Chen-Ho; Yang, Qing-Zheng

    2016-02-18

    We report the first highly efficient artificial light-harvesting systems based on nanocrystals of difluoroboron chromophores to mimic the chlorosomes, one of the most efficient light-harvesting systems found in green photosynthetic bacteria. Uniform nanocrystals with controlled donor/acceptor ratios were prepared by simple coassembly of the donors and acceptors in water. The light-harvesting system funneled the excitation energy collected by a thousand donor chromophores to a single acceptor. The well-defined spatial organization of individual chromophores in the nanocrystals enabled an energy transfer efficiency of 95 %, even at a donor/acceptor ratio as high as 1000:1, and a significant fluorescence of the acceptor was observed up to donor/acceptor ratios of 200 000:1. PMID:26799735

  13. Temperature and Ionic Strength Effects on the Chlorosome Light-Harvesting Antenna Complex

    SciTech Connect

    Tang, Kuo-Hsiang; Zhu, Liying; Urban, Volker S; Collins, Aaron M.; Biswas, Pratim; Blankenship, R. E.

    2011-03-15

    Chlorosomes, the peripheral light-harvesting antenna complex from green photosynthetic bacteria, are the largest and one of the most efficient light-harvesting antenna complexes found in nature. In contrast to other light-harvesting antennas, chlorosomes are constructed from more than 150,000 self-assembled bacteriochlorophylls (BChls) and contain relatively few proteins that play secondary roles. These unique properties have led to chlorosomes as an attractive candidate for developing biohybrid solar cell devices. In this article, we investigate the temperature and ionic strength effects on the viability of chlorosomes from the photosynthetic green bacterium Chloroflexus aurantiacus using small-angle neutron scattering and dynamic light scattering. Our studies indicate that chlorosomes remain intact up to 75 °C and that salt induces the formation of large aggregates of chlorosomes. No internal structural changes are observed for the aggregates. The salt-induced aggregation, which is a reversible process, is more efficient with divalent metal ions than with monovalent metal ions. Moreover, with treatment at 98 °C for 2 min, the bulk of the chlorosome pigments are undamaged, while the baseplate is destroyed. Chlorosomes without the baseplate remain rodlike in shape and are 30-40% smaller than with the baseplate attached. Further, chlorosomes are stable from pH 5.5 to 11.0. Together, this is the first time such a range of characterization tools have been used for chlorosomes, and this has enabled elucidation of properties that are not only important to understanding their functionality but also may be useful in biohybrid devices for effective light harvesting.

  14. Light-harvesting in photosystem I.

    PubMed

    Croce, Roberta; van Amerongen, Herbert

    2013-10-01

    This review focuses on the light-harvesting properties of photosystem I (PSI) and its LHCI outer antenna. LHCI consists of different chlorophyll a/b binding proteins called Lhca's, surrounding the core of PSI. In total, the PSI-LHCI complex of higher plants contains 173 chlorophyll molecules, most of which are there to harvest sunlight energy and to transfer the created excitation energy to the reaction center (RC) where it is used for charge separation. The efficiency of the complex is based on the capacity to deliver this energy to the RC as fast as possible, to minimize energy losses. The performance of PSI in this respect is remarkable: on average it takes around 50 ps for the excitation to reach the RC in plants, without being quenched in the meantime. This means that the internal quantum efficiency is close to 100% which makes PSI the most efficient energy converter in nature. In this review, we describe the light-harvesting properties of the complex in relation to protein and pigment organization/composition, and we discuss the important parameters that assure its very high quantum efficiency. Excitation energy transfer and trapping in the core and/or Lhcas, as well as in the supercomplexes PSI-LHCI and PSI-LHCI-LHCII are described in detail with the aim of giving an overview of the functional behavior of these complexes. PMID:23645376

  15. Quantum mechanical light harvesting mechanisms in photosynthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scholes, Gregory

    2012-02-01

    More than 10 million billion photons of light strike a leaf each second. Incredibly, almost every red-coloured photon is captured by chlorophyll pigments and initiates steps to plant growth. Last year we reported that marine algae use quantum mechanics in order to optimize photosynthesis [1], a process essential to its survival. These and other insights from the natural world promise to revolutionize our ability to harness the power of the sun. In a recent review [2] we described the principles learned from studies of various natural antenna complexes and suggested how to utilize that knowledge to shape future technologies. We forecast the need to develop ways to direct and regulate excitation energy flow using molecular organizations that facilitate feedback and control--not easy given that the energy is only stored for a billionth of a second. In this presentation I will describe new results that explain the observation and meaning of quantum-coherent energy transfer. [4pt] [1] Elisabetta Collini, Cathy Y. Wong, Krystyna E. Wilk, Paul M. G. Curmi, Paul Brumer, and Gregory D. Scholes, ``Coherently wired light-harvesting in photosynthetic marine algae at ambient temperature'' Nature 463, 644-648 (2010).[0pt] [2] Gregory D. Scholes, Graham R. Fleming, Alexandra Olaya-Castro and Rienk van Grondelle, ``Lessons from nature about solar light harvesting'' Nature Chem. 3, 763-774 (2011).

  16. Nanotechnology and Quasicrystals: From Self-Assembly to Photonic Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lifshitz, R.

    After providing a concise overview on quasicrystals and their discovery more than a quarter of a century ago, I consider the unexpected interplay between nano-technology and quasiperiodic crystals. Of particular relevance are efforts to fabricate artificial functional micro- or nanostructures, as well as efforts to control the self-assembly of nanostructures, where current knowledge about the possibility of having long-range order without periodicity can provide significant advantages. I discuss examples of systems ranging from artificial metamaterials for photonic applications, through self-assembled soft matter, to surface waves and optically-induced nonlinear photonic quasicrystals.

  17. Design strategies for self-assembly of discrete targets

    SciTech Connect

    Madge, Jim; Miller, Mark A.

    2015-07-28

    Both biological and artificial self-assembly processes can take place by a range of different schemes, from the successive addition of identical building blocks to hierarchical sequences of intermediates, all the way to the fully addressable limit in which each component is unique. In this paper, we introduce an idealized model of cubic particles with patterned faces that allows self-assembly strategies to be compared and tested. We consider a simple octameric target, starting with the minimal requirements for successful self-assembly and comparing the benefits and limitations of more sophisticated hierarchical and addressable schemes. Simulations are performed using a hybrid dynamical Monte Carlo protocol that allows self-assembling clusters to rearrange internally while still providing Stokes-Einstein-like diffusion of aggregates of different sizes. Our simulations explicitly capture the thermodynamic, dynamic, and steric challenges typically faced by self-assembly processes, including competition between multiple partially completed structures. Self-assembly pathways are extracted from the simulation trajectories by a fully extendable scheme for identifying structural fragments, which are then assembled into history diagrams for successfully completed target structures. For the simple target, a one-component assembly scheme is most efficient and robust overall, but hierarchical and addressable strategies can have an advantage under some conditions if high yield is a priority.

  18. Design strategies for self-assembly of discrete targets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Madge, Jim; Miller, Mark A.

    2015-07-01

    Both biological and artificial self-assembly processes can take place by a range of different schemes, from the successive addition of identical building blocks to hierarchical sequences of intermediates, all the way to the fully addressable limit in which each component is unique. In this paper, we introduce an idealized model of cubic particles with patterned faces that allows self-assembly strategies to be compared and tested. We consider a simple octameric target, starting with the minimal requirements for successful self-assembly and comparing the benefits and limitations of more sophisticated hierarchical and addressable schemes. Simulations are performed using a hybrid dynamical Monte Carlo protocol that allows self-assembling clusters to rearrange internally while still providing Stokes-Einstein-like diffusion of aggregates of different sizes. Our simulations explicitly capture the thermodynamic, dynamic, and steric challenges typically faced by self-assembly processes, including competition between multiple partially completed structures. Self-assembly pathways are extracted from the simulation trajectories by a fully extendable scheme for identifying structural fragments, which are then assembled into history diagrams for successfully completed target structures. For the simple target, a one-component assembly scheme is most efficient and robust overall, but hierarchical and addressable strategies can have an advantage under some conditions if high yield is a priority.

  19. Light-Harvesting Nanoparticle Core-Shell Clusters with Controllable Optical Output.

    PubMed

    Sun, Dazhi; Tian, Ye; Zhang, Yugang; Xu, Zhihua; Sfeir, Matthew Y; Cotlet, Mircea; Gang, Oleg

    2015-06-23

    We used DNA self-assembly methods to fabricate a series of core-shell gold nanoparticle-DNA-colloidal quantum dot (AuNP-DNA-Qdot) nanoclusters with satellite-like architecture to modulate optical (photoluminescence) response. By varying the intercomponent distance through the DNA linker length designs, we demonstrate precise tuning of the plasmon-exciton interaction and the optical behavior of the nanoclusters from regimes characterized by photoluminescence quenching to photoluminescence enhancement. The combination of detailed X-ray scattering probing with photoluminescence intensity and lifetime studies revealed the relation between the cluster structure and its optical output. Compared to conventional light-harvesting systems like conjugated polymers and multichromophoric dendrimers, the proposed nanoclusters bring enhanced flexibility in controlling the optical behavior toward a desired application, and they can be regarded as controllable optical switches via the optically pumped color. PMID:25933097

  20. Onset of self-assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Chitanvis, S.M.

    1998-02-01

    We have formulated a theory of self-assembly based on the notion of local gauge invariance at the mesoscale. Local gauge invariance at the mesoscale generates the required long-range entropic forces responsible for self-assembly in binary systems. Our theory was applied to study the onset of mesostructure formation above a critical temperature in estane, a diblock copolymer. We used diagrammatic methods to transcend the Gaussian approximation and obtain a correlation length {xi}{approximately}(c{minus}c{sup {asterisk}}){sup {minus}{gamma}}, where c{sup {asterisk}} is the minimum concentration below which self-assembly is impossible, c is the current concentration, and {gamma} was found numerically to be fairly close to 2/3. The renormalized diffusion constant vanishes as the critical concentration is approached, indicating the occurrence of critical slowing down, while the correlation function remains finite at the transition point. {copyright} {ital 1998} {ital The American Physical Society}

  1. Self-assembly via microfluidics

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Lei

    2015-01-01

    The self-assembly of amphiphilic building blocks has attracted extensive interest in myriad fields in recent years, due to their great potential in the nanoscale design of functional hybrid materials. Microfluidic techniques provide an intriguing method to control kinetic aspects of the self-assembly of molecular amphiphiles by the facile adjustment of the hydrodynamics of the fluids. Up to now, there have been several reports about one-step direct self-assembly of different building blocks with versatile and multi-shape products without templates, which demonstrated the advantages of microfluidics. These assemblies with different morphologies have great applications in various areas such as cancer therapy, micromotor fabrication, and controlled drug delivery. PMID:26486277

  2. Long range excitonic transport in a biomimetic system inspired by the bacterial light-harvesting apparatus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harel, Elad

    2012-05-01

    Photosynthesis, the process by which energy from sunlight drives cellular metabolism, relies on a unique organization of light-harvesting and reaction center complexes. Recently, the organization of light-harvesting LH2 complexes and dimeric reaction center-light-harvesting I-PufX core complexes in membranes of purple non-sulfur bacteria was revealed by atomic force microscopy [S. Bahatyrova et al., Nature (London) 430, 1058 (2004)]. Here, we discuss optimal exciton transfer in a biomimetic system closely modeled on the structure of LH2 and its organization within the membrane using a Markovian quantum model with dissipation and trapping added phenomenologically. In a deliberate manner, we neglect the high level detail of the bacterial light-harvesting complex and its interaction with the phonon bath in order to elucidate a set of design principles that may be incorporated in artificial pigment-scaffold constructs in a supramolecular assembly. We show that our scheme reproduces many of the most salient features found in their natural counterpart and may be largely explained by simple electrostatic considerations. Most importantly, we show that quantum effects act primarily to enforce robustness with respect to spatial and spectral disorder between and within complexes. The implications of such an arrangement are discussed in the context of biomimetic photosynthetic analogs capable of transferring energy efficiently across tens to hundreds of nanometers.

  3. Long range excitonic transport in a biomimetic system inspired by the bacterial light-harvesting apparatus

    SciTech Connect

    Harel, Elad

    2012-05-07

    Photosynthesis, the process by which energy from sunlight drives cellular metabolism, relies on a unique organization of light-harvesting and reaction center complexes. Recently, the organization of light-harvesting LH2 complexes and dimeric reaction center-light-harvesting I-PufX core complexes in membranes of purple non-sulfur bacteria was revealed by atomic force microscopy [S. Bahatyrova et al., Nature (London) 430, 1058 (2004)]. Here, we discuss optimal exciton transfer in a biomimetic system closely modeled on the structure of LH2 and its organization within the membrane using a Markovian quantum model with dissipation and trapping added phenomenologically. In a deliberate manner, we neglect the high level detail of the bacterial light-harvesting complex and its interaction with the phonon bath in order to elucidate a set of design principles that may be incorporated in artificial pigment-scaffold constructs in a supramolecular assembly. We show that our scheme reproduces many of the most salient features found in their natural counterpart and may be largely explained by simple electrostatic considerations. Most importantly, we show that quantum effects act primarily to enforce robustness with respect to spatial and spectral disorder between and within complexes. The implications of such an arrangement are discussed in the context of biomimetic photosynthetic analogs capable of transferring energy efficiently across tens to hundreds of nanometers.

  4. Self-assembling amphiphilic peptides†

    PubMed Central

    Dehsorkhi, Ashkan; Castelletto, Valeria; Hamley, Ian W

    2014-01-01

    The self-assembly of several classes of amphiphilic peptides is reviewed, and selected applications are discussed. We discuss recent work on the self-assembly of lipopeptides, surfactant-like peptides and amyloid peptides derived from the amyloid-β peptide. The influence of environmental variables such as pH and temperature on aggregate nanostructure is discussed. Enzyme-induced remodelling due to peptide cleavage and nanostructure control through photocleavage or photo-cross-linking are also considered. Lastly, selected applications of amphiphilic peptides in biomedicine and materials science are outlined. © 2014 The Authors. Journal of Peptide Science published by European Peptide Society and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. PMID:24729276

  5. Binary ionic porphyrin nanosheets: electronic and light-harvesting properties regulated by crystal structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tian, Yongming; M. Beavers, Christine; Busani, Tito; Martin, Kathleen E.; Jacobsen, John L.; Mercado, Brandon Q.; Swartzentruber, Brian S.; van Swol, Frank; Medforth, Craig J.; Shelnutt, John A.

    2012-02-01

    Crystalline solids self-assembled from anionic and cationic porphyrins provide a new class of multifunctional optoelectronic micro- and nanomaterials. A 1 : 1 combination of zinc(ii) tetra(4-sulfonatophenyl)porphyrin (ZnTPPS) and tin(iv) tetra(N-methyl-4-pyridiniumyl)porphyrin (SnTNMePyP) gives porphyrin nanosheets with high aspect ratios and varying thickness. The room temperature preparation of the nanosheets has provided the first X-ray crystal structure of a cooperative binary ionic (CBI) solid. The unit cell contains one and one-half molecules of aquo-ZnTPPS4- (an electron donor) and three half molecules of dihydroxy-SnTNMePyP4+ (an electron acceptor). Charge balance in the solid is reached without any non-porphyrinic ions, as previously determined for other CBI nanomaterials by non-crystallographic means. The crystal structure reveals a complicated molecular arrangement with slipped π-π stacking only occurring in isolated dimers of one of the symmetrically unique zinc porphyrins. Consistent with the crystal structure, UV-visible J-aggregate bands indicative of exciton delocalization and extended π-π stacking are not observed. XRD measurements show that the structure of the Zn/Sn nanosheets is distinct from that of Zn/Sn four-leaf clover-like CBI solids reported previously. In contrast with the Zn/Sn clovers that do exhibit J-aggregate bands and are photoconductive, the nanosheets are not photoconductive. Even so, the nanosheets act as light-harvesting structures in an artificial photosynthesis system capable of reducing water to hydrogen but not as efficiently as the Zn/Sn clovers.Crystalline solids self-assembled from anionic and cationic porphyrins provide a new class of multifunctional optoelectronic micro- and nanomaterials. A 1 : 1 combination of zinc(ii) tetra(4-sulfonatophenyl)porphyrin (ZnTPPS) and tin(iv) tetra(N-methyl-4-pyridiniumyl)porphyrin (SnTNMePyP) gives porphyrin nanosheets with high aspect ratios and varying thickness. The room

  6. Development of Scaffolds for Light Harvesting and Photocatalysis from the Coat Protein of Tobacco Mosaic Virus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dedeo, Michel Toussaint

    The utility of a previously developed TMV-based light harvesting system has been dramatically expanded through the introduction of reactive handles for the site-specific modification of the interior and exterior surfaces. Further experiments to reengineer the coat protein have produced structures with unique, unexpected, and useful assembly properties that complement the newly available surface modifications. Energy transfer from chromophores in the RNA channel of self-assembled TMV structures to the exterior was made possible by conjugation of acceptor dyes and porphyrins to the N-terminus. By repositioning the N-terminus to the pore through circular permutation, this process was repeated to create structures that mimic the light harvesting 1 complex of photosynthetic bacteria. To study and improve upon natural photosynthesis, closely packed chromophore arrays and gold nanoparticles were tethered to the pore of stabilized TMV disks through introduction of a uniquely reactive lysine. Finally, a dimeric TMV coat protein was produced to control the distribution and arrangement of synthetic groups with synergistic activity.

  7. Interference lithographic nanopatterning of plant and bacterial light-harvesting complexes on gold substrates

    PubMed Central

    Patole, Samson; Vasilev, Cvetelin; El-Zubir, Osama; Wang, Lin; Johnson, Matthew P.; Cadby, Ashley J.; Leggett, Graham J.; Hunter, C. Neil

    2015-01-01

    We describe a facile approach for nanopatterning of photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes over macroscopic areas, and use optical spectroscopy to demonstrate retention of native properties by both site-specifically and non-specifically attached photosynthetic membrane proteins. A Lloyd's mirror dual-beam interferometer was used to expose self-assembled monolayers of amine-terminated alkylthiolates on gold to laser irradiation. Following exposure, photo-oxidized adsorbates were replaced by oligo(ethylene glycol) terminated thiols, and the remaining intact amine-functionalized regions were used for attachment of the major light-harvesting chlorophyll–protein complex from plants, LHCII. These amine patterns could be derivatized with nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA), so that polyhistidine-tagged bacteriochlorophyll–protein complexes from phototrophic bacteria could be attached with a defined surface orientation. By varying parameters such as the angle between the interfering beams and the laser irradiation dose, it was possible to vary the period and widths of NTA and amine-functionalized lines on the surfaces; periods varied from 1200 to 240 nm and linewidths as small as 60 nm (λ/4) were achieved. This level of control over the surface chemistry was reflected in the surface topology of the protein nanostructures imaged by atomic force microscopy; fluorescence imaging and spectral measurements demonstrated that the surface-attached proteins had retained their native functionality. PMID:26464784

  8. Structure-based model for light-harvesting properties of nucleic acid nanostructures

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Keyao; Boulais, Etienne; Yang, Lun; Bathe, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Programmed self-assembly of DNA enables the rational design of megadalton-scale macromolecular assemblies with sub-nanometer scale precision. These assemblies can be programmed to serve as structural scaffolds for secondary chromophore molecules with light-harvesting properties. Like in natural systems, the local and global spatial organization of these synthetic scaffolded chromophore systems plays a crucial role in their emergent excitonic and optical properties. Previously, we introduced a computational model to predict the large-scale 3D solution structure and flexibility of nucleic acid nanostructures programmed using the principle of scaffolded DNA origami. Here, we use Förster resonance energy transfer theory to simulate the temporal dynamics of dye excitation and energy transfer accounting both for overall DNA nanostructure architecture as well as atomic-level DNA and dye chemical structure and composition. Results are used to calculate emergent optical properties including effective absorption cross-section, absorption and emission spectra and total power transferred to a biomimetic reaction center in an existing seven-helix double stranded DNA-based antenna. This structure-based computational framework enables the efficient in silico evaluation of nucleic acid nanostructures for diverse light-harvesting and photonic applications. PMID:24311563

  9. Structure-based model for light-harvesting properties of nucleic acid nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Pan, Keyao; Boulais, Etienne; Yang, Lun; Bathe, Mark

    2014-02-01

    Programmed self-assembly of DNA enables the rational design of megadalton-scale macromolecular assemblies with sub-nanometer scale precision. These assemblies can be programmed to serve as structural scaffolds for secondary chromophore molecules with light-harvesting properties. Like in natural systems, the local and global spatial organization of these synthetic scaffolded chromophore systems plays a crucial role in their emergent excitonic and optical properties. Previously, we introduced a computational model to predict the large-scale 3D solution structure and flexibility of nucleic acid nanostructures programmed using the principle of scaffolded DNA origami. Here, we use Förster resonance energy transfer theory to simulate the temporal dynamics of dye excitation and energy transfer accounting both for overall DNA nanostructure architecture as well as atomic-level DNA and dye chemical structure and composition. Results are used to calculate emergent optical properties including effective absorption cross-section, absorption and emission spectra and total power transferred to a biomimetic reaction center in an existing seven-helix double stranded DNA-based antenna. This structure-based computational framework enables the efficient in silico evaluation of nucleic acid nanostructures for diverse light-harvesting and photonic applications. PMID:24311563

  10. Polymer light harvesting composites for optoelectronic applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Sam-Shajing; Wang, Dan

    2015-09-01

    Polymer based optoelectronic composites and thin film devices exhibit great potential in space applications due to their lightweight, flexible shape, high photon absorption coefficients, and robust radiation tolerance in space environment. Polymer/dye composites appear promising for optoelectronics applications due to potential enhancements in both light harvesting and charge separation. In this study, the optoelectronic properties of a series of molecular dyes paired with a conjugated polymer Poly(3-hexylthiophene-2,5-diyl) (P3HT) were investigated. Specifically, the solution PL quenching coefficients (Ksv) of dye/polymer follows a descending order from dyes of Chloro(protoporphyrinato)iron(III) (Hemin), Protoporphyrin, to meso-Tetra(4-carboxyphenyl)porphine (TCPP). In optoelectronic devices made of the P3HT/dye/PCBM composites, the short circuit current densities Jsc as well as the overall power conversion efficiencies (PCE) also follow a descending order from Hemin, Protoporphyrin, to TCPP, despite Hemin exhibits the intermediate polymer/dye LUMO (lowest unoccupied molecular orbital) offset and lowest absorption coefficient as compared to the other two dyes, i.e., the cell optoelectronic efficiency did not follow the LUMO offsets which are the key driving forces for the photo induced charge separations. This study reveals that too large LUMO offset or electron transfer driving force may result in smaller PL quenching and optoelectronic conversion efficiency, this could be another experimental evidence for the Marcus electron transfer model, particularly for the Marcus `inverted region'. It appears an optimum electron transfer driving force or strong PL quenching appears more critical than absorption coefficient for optoelectronic conversion devices.

  11. Self-assembly-driven nematization.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Khanh Thuy; Sciortino, Francesco; De Michele, Cristiano

    2014-04-29

    The anisotropy of attractive interactions between particles can favor, through a self-assembly process, the formation of linear semi-flexible chains. In the appropriate temperatures and concentration ranges, the growing aspect ratio of the aggregates can induce formation of a nematic phase, as recently experimentally observed in several biologically relevant systems. We present here a numerical study of the isotropic-nematic phase boundary for a model of bifunctional polymerizing hard cylinders, to provide an accurate benchmark for recent theoretical approaches and to assess their ability to capture the coupling between self-assembly and orientational ordering. The comparison indicates the importance of properly modeling excluded volume and orientational entropy and provides a quantitative confirmation of some theoretical predictions. PMID:24701976

  12. Multifunctional self-assembled monolayers

    SciTech Connect

    Zawodzinski, T.; Bar, G.; Rubin, S.; Uribe, F.; Ferrais, J.

    1996-06-01

    This is the final report of at three year, Laboratory-Directed Research and Development (LDRD) project at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). The specific goals of this research project were threefold: to develop multifunctional self-assembled monolayers, to understand the role of monolayer structure on the functioning of such systems, and to apply this knowledge to the development of electrochemical enzyme sensors. An array of molecules that can be used to attach electrochemically active biomolecules to gold surfaces has been synthesized. Several members of a class of electroactive compounds have been characterized and the factors controlling surface modification are beginning to be characterized. Enzymes have been attached to self-assembled molecules arranged on the gold surface, a critical step toward the ultimate goal of this project. Several alternative enzyme attachment strategies to achieve robust enzyme- modified surfaces have been explored. Several means of juxtaposing enzymes and mediators, electroactive compounds through which the enzyme can exchange electrons with the electrode surface, have also been investigated. Finally, the development of sensitive biosensors based on films loaded with nanoscale-supported gold particles that have surface modified with the self-assembled enzyme and mediator have been explored.

  13. Spectroscopic Investigations of the Photophysics of Cryptophyte Light-Harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinshaw, Rayomond

    The biological significance of photosynthesis is indisputable as it is necessary for nearly all life on earth. Photosynthesis provides chemical energy for plants, algae, and bacteria, while heterotrophic organisms rely on these species as their ultimate food source. The initial step in photosynthesis requires the absorption of sunlight to create electronic excitations. Light-harvesting proteins play the functional role of capturing solar radiation and transferring the resulting excitation to the reaction centers where it is used to carry out the chemical reactions of photosynthesis. Despite the wide variety of light-harvesting protein structures and arrangements, most light-harvesting proteins are able to utilize the captured solar energy for charge separation with near perfect quantum efficiency.1 This thesis will focus on understanding the energy transfer dynamics and photophysics of a specific subset of light-harvesting antennae known as phycobiliproteins. These proteins are extracted from cryptophyte algae and are investigated using steady-state and ultrafast spectroscopic techniques.

  14. Synergistic Two-Photon Absorption Enhancement in Photosynthetic Light Harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Kuo-Mei; Chen, Yu-Wei; Gao, Ting-Fong

    2012-06-01

    The grand scale fixation of solar energies into chemical substances by photosynthetic reactions of light-harvesting organisms provides Earth's other life forms a thriving environment. Scientific explorations in the past decades have unraveled the fundamental photophysical and photochemical processes in photosynthesis. Higher plants, green algae, and light-harvesting bacteria utilize organized pigment-protein complexes to harvest solar power efficiently and the resultant electronic excitations are funneled into a reaction center, where the first charge separation process takes place. Here we show experimental evidences that green algae (Chlorella vulgaris) in vivo display a synergistic two-photon absorption enhancement in their photosynthetic light harvesting. Their absorption coefficients at various wavelengths display dramatic dependence on the photon flux. This newly found phenomenon is attributed to a coherence-electronic-energy-transfer-mediated (CEETRAM) photon absorption process of light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes of green algae. Under the ambient light level, algae and higher plants can utilize this quantum mechanical mechanism to create two entangled electronic excitations adjacently in their light-harvesting networks. Concerted multiple electron transfer reactions in the reaction centers and oxygen evolving complexes can be implemented efficiently by the coherent motion of two entangled excitons from antennae to the charge separation reaction sites. To fabricate nanostructured, synthetic light-harvesting apparatus, the paramount role of the CEETRAM photon absorption mechanism should be seriously considered in the strategic guidelines.

  15. Supramolecular coordination polymer formed from artificial light-harvesting dendrimer.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hosoowi; Jeong, Young-Hwan; Kim, Joo-Ho; Kim, Inhye; Lee, Eunji; Jang, Woo-Dong

    2015-09-30

    We report the formation of supramolecular coordination polymers formed from multiporphyrin dendrimers (PZnPM; M = FB or Cu), composed of the focal freebase porphyrin (PFB) or cupper porphyrin (PCu) with eight zinc porphyrin (PZn) wings, and multipyridyl porphyrins (PyPM; M = FB or Cu), PFB or PCu with eight pyridyl groups, through multiple axial coordination interactions of pyridyl groups to PZns. UV-vis absorption spectra were recorded upon titration of PyPFB to PZnPFB. Differential spectra, obtained by subtracting the absorption of PZnPFB without guest addition as well as the absorption of PyPFB, exhibited clear isosbestic points with saturation binding at 1 equiv addition of PyPFB to PZnPFB. Job's plot analysis also indicated 1:1 stoichiometry for the saturation binding. The apparent association constant between PZnPFB and PyPFB (2.91 × 10(6) M(-1)), estimated by isothermal titration calorimetry, was high enough for fibrous assemblies to form at micromolar concentrations. The formation of a fibrous assembly from PZnPFB and PyPFB was visualized by atomic force microscopy and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). When a 1:1 mixture solution of PZnPFB and PyPFB (20 μM) in toluene was cast onto mica, fibrous assemblies with regular height (ca. 2 nm) were observed. TEM images obtained from 1:1 mixture solution of PZnPFB and PyPFB (0.1 wt %) in toluene clearly showed the formation of nanofibers with a regular diameter of ca. 6 nm. Fluorescence emission measurement of PZnPM indicated efficient intramolecular energy transfer from PZn to the focal PFB or PCu. By the formation of supramolecular coordination polymers, the intramolecular energy transfer changed to intermolecular energy transfer from PZnPM to PyPM. When the nonfluorescent PyPCu was titrated to fluorescent PZnPFB, fluorescence emission from the focal PFB was gradually decreased. By the titration of fluorescent PyPFB to nonfluorescent PZnPCu, fluorescence emission from PFB in PyPFB was gradually increased due to the efficient energy transfer from PZn wings in PZnPCu to PyPFB. PMID:26349620

  16. Stereochemistry in subcomponent self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Castilla, Ana M; Ramsay, William J; Nitschke, Jonathan R

    2014-07-15

    CONSPECTUS: As Pasteur noted more than 150 years ago, asymmetry exists in matter at all organization levels. Biopolymers such as proteins or DNA adopt one-handed conformations, as a result of the chirality of their constituent building blocks. Even at the level of elementary particles, asymmetry exists due to parity violation in the weak nuclear force. While the origin of homochirality in living systems remains obscure, as does the possibility of its connection with broken symmetries at larger or smaller length scales, its centrality to biomolecular structure is clear: the single-handed forms of bio(macro)molecules interlock in ways that depend upon their handednesses. Dynamic artificial systems, such as helical polymers and other supramolecular structures, have provided a means to study the mechanisms of transmission and amplification of stereochemical information, which are key processes to understand in the context of the origins and functions of biological homochirality. Control over stereochemical information transfer in self-assembled systems will also be crucial for the development of new applications in chiral recognition and separation, asymmetric catalysis, and molecular devices. In this Account, we explore different aspects of stereochemistry encountered during the use of subcomponent self-assembly, whereby complex structures are prepared through the simultaneous formation of dynamic coordinative (N → metal) and covalent (N═C) bonds. This technique provides a useful method to study stereochemical information transfer processes within metal-organic assemblies, which may contain different combinations of fixed (carbon) and labile (metal) stereocenters. We start by discussing how simple subcomponents with fixed stereogenic centers can be incorporated in the organic ligands of mononuclear coordination complexes and communicate stereochemical information to the metal center, resulting in diastereomeric enrichment. Enantiopure subcomponents were then

  17. A self-assembled ionophore

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tirumala, Sampath K.

    1997-11-01

    Ionophores are compounds that bind and transport ions. Ion binding and transport are fundamental to many biological and chemical processes. In this thesis we detail the structural characterization and cation binding properties of a self-assembled ionophore built from an isoguanosine (isoG) derivative, 5sp'-t-butyldimethylsilyl-2sp',3sp'-isopropylidene isoG 30. We begin with a summary of the themes that facilitate ionophore design and the definitions of "self-assembly" and "self-assembled ionophore" in Chapter 1. In Chapter 2, we describe the structural characterization of the isoG 30 self-assembly. IsoG possesses complementary hydrogen bond donor and acceptor sites suitable to form a Csb4-symmetric tetramer, (isoG)sb4 51, that is stable even in high dielectric organic solvents such as CDsb3CN and dsb6-acetone. The isoG tetramer 51 has been characterized by vapor phase osmometry, UV spectroscopy, and by 1D and 2D NMR spectroscopy. The isoG tetramer 51 organizes by hydrogen bonding between the Watson-Crick face of one isoG base and the complementary bottom edge of another purine. The tetramer 51 is stabilized by an inner and outer ring of hydrogen bonds. The inner ring forms between the imino NH1 proton of one monomer and the C2 carbonyl oxygen of an adjacent monomer, while the outer ring is made up of four NH6-N3 hydrogen bonds. The isoG tetramer 51 is thermodynamically stable, with an equilibrium constant (Ksba) of ca. 10sp9-10sp{10} Msp{-3} at room temperature, and a DeltaGsp° of tetramer formation of -12.5 kcal molsp{-1} in dsb6-acetone at 25sp°C. The van't Hoff plots indicated that the thermodynamic parameters for tetramer formation were DeltaHsp° = -18.2 ± 0.87 kcal molsp{-1} and DeltaSsp°sb{298} = -19.1 ± 5.45 eu. In Chapter 3, we describe the cation binding properties of isoG tetramer 51. The isoG tetramer 51 has a central cavity, containing four oxygen atoms, that is suitable for cation coordination. Depending on the cation, the resulting iso

  18. Self-assembling magnetic "snakes"

    SciTech Connect

    2010-01-01

    Nickel particles float peacefully in a liquid medium until a giant snake seems to swim by and snatch several particles up, adding to its own mass. The self-assembled "snakes" act like biological systems, but they are not alive and are driven by a magnetic field. The research may someday offer some insight into the organization of life itself. Read more at Wired: http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/03/snakes/ Research and video by Alex Snezhko and Igor Aronson, Argonne National Laboratory.

  19. Chemical Reactions Directed Peptide Self-Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Rasale, Dnyaneshwar B.; Das, Apurba K.

    2015-01-01

    Fabrication of self-assembled nanostructures is one of the important aspects in nanoscience and nanotechnology. The study of self-assembled soft materials remains an area of interest due to their potential applications in biomedicine. The versatile properties of soft materials can be tuned using a bottom up approach of small molecules. Peptide based self-assembly has significant impact in biology because of its unique features such as biocompatibility, straight peptide chain and the presence of different side chain functionality. These unique features explore peptides in various self-assembly process. In this review, we briefly introduce chemical reaction-mediated peptide self-assembly. Herein, we have emphasised enzymes, native chemical ligation and photochemical reactions in the exploration of peptide self-assembly. PMID:25984603

  20. Self-assembled controllable microswimmers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grosjean, Galien; Lagubeau, Guillaume; Darras, Alexis; Lumay, Geoffroy; Hubert, Maxime; Vandewalle, Nicolas

    2015-11-01

    Because they cause a deformation of the interface, floating particles interact. In particular, identical particles attract each other. To counter this attraction, particles possessing a large magnetic moment m-> are used. When m-> is perpendicular to the surface, dipole-dipole interaction is repulsive. This competition of forces can lead to the spontaneous formation of organized structures. By using submillimetric steel spheres for which m-> ~ B-> , interdistances in the system can be precisely tuned. Here, we deform these self-assemblies by adding a horizontal contribution m-> to the magnetic moment. Time reversal symmetry is broken in the system, leading to locomotion at low Reynolds number. Moreover, swimming direction depends on the orientation of field, meaning that swimming trajectories can be finely controlled. A model allows to understand the breaking of symmetry, while a study of the vibration modes gives further informations on the dynamics of this sytem. Because this system forms by self-assembly, it allows miniaturization with applications such as cargo transport or solvent flows. It is highly versatile, being composed of simple passive particles and controlled by magnetic fields.

  1. Convergent synthesis of multiporphyrin light-harvesting rods

    DOEpatents

    Lindsey, Jonathan S.; Loewe, Robert S.

    2003-08-05

    The present invention provides a convergent method for the synthesis of light harvesting rods. The rods are oligomers of the formula A.sup.1 (A.sup.b+1).sub.b, wherein b is at least 1, A.sup.1 through A.sup.b+1 are covalently coupled rod segments, and each rod segment A.sup.1 through A.sup.1+b comprises a compound of the formula X.sup.1 (X.sup.m+1).sub.m wherein m is at least 1 and X.sup.1 through X.sup.m+1 are covalently coupled porphyrinic macrocycles. Light harvesting arrays and solar cells containing such light harvesting rods are also described, along with intermediates useful in such methods and rods produced by such methods.

  2. Self-assembled nanomaterials for photoacoustic imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Lei; Yang, Pei-Pei; Zhao, Xiao-Xiao; Wang, Hao

    2016-01-01

    In recent years, extensive endeavors have been paid to construct functional self-assembled nanomaterials for various applications such as catalysis, separation, energy and biomedicines. To date, different strategies have been developed for preparing nanomaterials with diversified structures and functionalities via fine tuning of self-assembled building blocks. In terms of biomedical applications, bioimaging technologies are urgently calling for high-efficient probes/contrast agents for high-performance bioimaging. Photoacoustic (PA) imaging is an emerging whole-body imaging modality offering high spatial resolution, deep penetration and high contrast in vivo. The self-assembled nanomaterials show high stability in vivo, specific tolerance to sterilization and prolonged half-life stability and desirable targeting properties, which is a kind of promising PA contrast agents for biomedical imaging. Herein, we focus on summarizing recent advances in smart self-assembled nanomaterials with NIR absorption as PA contrast agents for biomedical imaging. According to the preparation strategy of the contrast agents, the self-assembled nanomaterials are categorized into two groups, i.e., the ex situ and in situ self-assembled nanomaterials. The driving forces, assembly modes and regulation of PA properties of self-assembled nanomaterials and their applications for long-term imaging, enzyme activity detection and aggregation-induced retention (AIR) effect for diagnosis and therapy are emphasized. Finally, we conclude with an outlook towards future developments of self-assembled nanomaterials for PA imaging.

  3. Self-Assembly: How Nature Builds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jones, M. Gail; Falvo, Michael R.; Broadwell, Bethany; Dotger, Sharon

    2006-01-01

    Self-assembly or spontaneous assembly is a process in which materials build themselves without assistance. This process plays a central role in the construction of biological structures and materials such as cells, viruses, and bone, and also in abiotic processes like phase transitions and crystal formation. The principles of self-assembly help…

  4. Self-assembled nanomaterials for photoacoustic imaging.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lei; Yang, Pei-Pei; Zhao, Xiao-Xiao; Wang, Hao

    2016-02-01

    In recent years, extensive endeavors have been paid to construct functional self-assembled nanomaterials for various applications such as catalysis, separation, energy and biomedicines. To date, different strategies have been developed for preparing nanomaterials with diversified structures and functionalities via fine tuning of self-assembled building blocks. In terms of biomedical applications, bioimaging technologies are urgently calling for high-efficient probes/contrast agents for high-performance bioimaging. Photoacoustic (PA) imaging is an emerging whole-body imaging modality offering high spatial resolution, deep penetration and high contrast in vivo. The self-assembled nanomaterials show high stability in vivo, specific tolerance to sterilization and prolonged half-life stability and desirable targeting properties, which is a kind of promising PA contrast agents for biomedical imaging. Herein, we focus on summarizing recent advances in smart self-assembled nanomaterials with NIR absorption as PA contrast agents for biomedical imaging. According to the preparation strategy of the contrast agents, the self-assembled nanomaterials are categorized into two groups, i.e., the ex situ and in situ self-assembled nanomaterials. The driving forces, assembly modes and regulation of PA properties of self-assembled nanomaterials and their applications for long-term imaging, enzyme activity detection and aggregation-induced retention (AIR) effect for diagnosis and therapy are emphasized. Finally, we conclude with an outlook towards future developments of self-assembled nanomaterials for PA imaging. PMID:26757620

  5. Dynamic self-assembly of microscale rotors and swimmers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davies Wykes, Megan S.; Palacci, Jérémie; Adachi, Takuji; Ristroph, Leif; Zhong, Xiao; Ward, Michael D.; Zhang, Jun; Shelley, Michael J.

    Biological systems often involve the self-assembly of basic components into complex and function- ing structures. Artificial systems that mimic such processes can provide a well-controlled setting to explore the principles involved and also synthesize useful micromachines. Our experiments show that immotile, but active, components self-assemble into two types of structure that exhibit the fundamental forms of motility: translation and rotation. Specifically, micron-scale metallic rods are designed to induce extensile surface flows in the presence of a chemical fuel; these rods interact with each other and pair up to form either a swimmer or a rotor. Such pairs can transition reversibly be- tween these two configurations, leading to kinetics reminiscent of bacterial run-and-tumble motion.

  6. Dynamic self-assembly of microscale rotors and swimmers.

    PubMed

    Davies Wykes, Megan S; Palacci, Jérémie; Adachi, Takuji; Ristroph, Leif; Zhong, Xiao; Ward, Michael D; Zhang, Jun; Shelley, Michael J

    2016-05-18

    Biological systems often involve the self-assembly of basic components into complex and functioning structures. Artificial systems that mimic such processes can provide a well-controlled setting to explore the principles involved and also synthesize useful micromachines. Our experiments show that immotile, but active, components self-assemble into two types of structure that exhibit the fundamental forms of motility: translation and rotation. Specifically, micron-scale metallic rods are designed to induce extensile surface flows in the presence of a chemical fuel; these rods interact with each other and pair up to form either a swimmer or a rotor. Such pairs can transition reversibly between these two configurations, leading to kinetics reminiscent of bacterial run-and-tumble motion. PMID:27121100

  7. Light harvesting: Strike while the iron is cold

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galoppini, Elena

    2015-11-01

    For many years, chemists have tried and failed to find efficient light-harvesting molecules based on Earth-abundant, environmentally friendly iron. Now, an iron complex has been developed with photoluminescent properties that are tuned to efficiently convert light to electrons.

  8. Lamellar Organization of Pigments in Chlorosomes, the Light Harvesting Complexes of Green Photosynthetic Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Pšenčík, J.; Ikonen, T. P.; Laurinmäki, P.; Merckel, M. C.; Butcher, S. J.; Serimaa, R. E.; Tuma, R.

    2004-01-01

    Chlorosomes of green photosynthetic bacteria constitute the most efficient light harvesting complexes found in nature. In addition, the chlorosome is the only known photosynthetic system where the majority of pigments (BChl) is not organized in pigment-protein complexes but instead is assembled into aggregates. Because of the unusual organization, the chlorosome structure has not been resolved and only models, in which BChl pigments were organized into large rods, were proposed on the basis of freeze-fracture electron microscopy and spectroscopic constraints. We have obtained the first high-resolution images of chlorosomes from the green sulfur bacterium Chlorobium tepidum by cryoelectron microscopy. Cryoelectron microscopy images revealed dense striations ∼20 Å apart. X-ray scattering from chlorosomes exhibited a feature with the same ∼20 Å spacing. No evidence for the rod models was obtained. The observed spacing and tilt-series cryoelectron microscopy projections are compatible with a lamellar model, in which BChl molecules aggregate into semicrystalline lateral arrays. The diffraction data further indicate that arrays are built from BChl dimers. The arrays form undulating lamellae, which, in turn, are held together by interdigitated esterifying alcohol tails, carotenoids, and lipids. The lamellar model is consistent with earlier spectroscopic data and provides insight into chlorosome self-assembly. PMID:15298919

  9. Lamellar organization of pigments in chlorosomes, the light harvesting complexes of green photosynthetic bacteria.

    PubMed

    Psencík, J; Ikonen, T P; Laurinmäki, P; Merckel, M C; Butcher, S J; Serimaa, R E; Tuma, R

    2004-08-01

    Chlorosomes of green photosynthetic bacteria constitute the most efficient light harvesting complexes found in nature. In addition, the chlorosome is the only known photosynthetic system where the majority of pigments (BChl) is not organized in pigment-protein complexes but instead is assembled into aggregates. Because of the unusual organization, the chlorosome structure has not been resolved and only models, in which BChl pigments were organized into large rods, were proposed on the basis of freeze-fracture electron microscopy and spectroscopic constraints. We have obtained the first high-resolution images of chlorosomes from the green sulfur bacterium Chlorobium tepidum by cryoelectron microscopy. Cryoelectron microscopy images revealed dense striations approximately 20 A apart. X-ray scattering from chlorosomes exhibited a feature with the same approximately 20 A spacing. No evidence for the rod models was obtained. The observed spacing and tilt-series cryoelectron microscopy projections are compatible with a lamellar model, in which BChl molecules aggregate into semicrystalline lateral arrays. The diffraction data further indicate that arrays are built from BChl dimers. The arrays form undulating lamellae, which, in turn, are held together by interdigitated esterifying alcohol tails, carotenoids, and lipids. The lamellar model is consistent with earlier spectroscopic data and provides insight into chlorosome self-assembly. PMID:15298919

  10. Design directed self-assembly of donor-acceptor polymers.

    PubMed

    Marszalek, Tomasz; Li, Mengmeng; Pisula, Wojciech

    2016-09-21

    Donor-acceptor polymers with an alternating array of donor and acceptor moieties have gained particular attention during recent years as active components of organic electronics. By implementation of suitable subunits within the conjugated backbone, these polymers can be made either electron-deficient or -rich. Additionally, their band gap and light absorption can be precisely tuned for improved light-harvesting in solar cells. On the other hand, the polymer design can also be modified to encode the desired supramolecular self-assembly in the solid-state that is essential for an unhindered transport of charge carriers. This review focuses on three major factors playing a role in the assembly of donor-acceptor polymers on surfaces which are (1) nature, geometry and substitution position of solubilizing alkyl side chains, (2) shape of the conjugated polymer defined by the backbone curvature, and (3) molecular weight which determines the conjugation length of the polymer. These factors adjust the fine balance between attractive and repulsive forces and ensure a close polymer packing important for an efficient charge hopping between neighboring chains. On the microscopic scale, an appropriate domain formation with a low density of structural defects in the solution deposited thin film is crucial for the charge transport. The charge carrier transport through such thin films is characterized by field-effect transistors as basic electronic elements. PMID:27440174

  11. Protein self-assembly via supramolecular strategies.

    PubMed

    Bai, Yushi; Luo, Quan; Liu, Junqiu

    2016-05-21

    Proteins, as the elemental basis of living organisms, mostly execute their biological tasks in the form of supramolecular self-assemblies with subtle architectures, dynamic interactions and versatile functionalities. Inspired by the structural harmony and functional beauty of natural protein self-assemblies to fabricate sophisticated yet highly ordered protein superstructures represents an adventure in the pursuit of nature's supreme wisdom. In this review, we focus on building protein self-assembly systems based on supramolecular strategies and classify recent progress by the types of utilized supramolecular driving forces. Especially, the design strategy, structure control and the thermodynamic/kinetic regulation of the self-assemblies, which will in turn provide insights into the natural biological self-assembly mechanism, are highlighted. In addition, recently, this research field is starting to extend its interest beyond constructing complex morphologies towards the potential applications of the self-assembly systems; several attempts to design functional protein complexes are also discussed. As such, we hope that this review will provide a panoramic sketch of the field and draw a roadmap towards the ultimate construction of advanced protein self-assemblies that even can serve as analogues of their natural counterparts. PMID:27080059

  12. Theoretical Study of the Initial Stages of Self-Assembly of a Carboxysome’s Facet

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Mahalik, J. P.; Brown, Kirsten A.; Cheng, Xiaolin; Fuentes-Cabrera, Miguel

    2016-02-24

    Bacterial microcompartments, BMCs, are organelles that exist within wide variety of bacteria and act as nanofactories. Among the different types of known BMCs, the carboxysome has been studied the most. The carboxysome plays an important role in the light-independent part of the photosynthesis process, where its icosahedral-like proteinaceous shell acts as a membrane that controls the transport of metabolites. Although a structural model exists for the carboxysome shell, it remains largely unknown how the shell proteins self-assemble. Understanding the self-assembly process can provide insights into how the shell affects the carboxysome s function and how it can be modified tomore » create new functionalities, such as artificial nanoreactors and artificial protein membranes. Here, we explain a theoretical framework that employs Monte Carlo simulations with a coarse-grain potential that reproduces well the atomistic potential of mean force; employing this framework, we are able to capture the initial stages of the 2D self-assembly of CcmK2 hexamers, a major protein-shell component of the carboxysome's facet. The simulations reveal that CcmK2 hexamers self-assemble into clusters that resemble what was seen experimentally in 2D layers. Further analysis of the simulation results suggests that the 2D self-assembly of carboxysome s facets is driven by a nucleation growth process, which in turn could play an important role in the hierarchical self- assembly of BMC shells in general.« less

  13. Theoretical Study of the Initial Stages of Self-Assembly of a Carboxysome's Facet.

    PubMed

    Mahalik, J P; Brown, Kirsten A; Cheng, Xiaolin; Fuentes-Cabrera, Miguel

    2016-06-28

    Bacterial microcompartments, BMCs, are organelles that exist within wide variety of bacteria and act as nanofactories. Among the different types of known BMCs, the carboxysome has been studied the most. The carboxysome plays an important role in the light-independent part of the photosynthesis process, where its icosahedral-like proteinaceous shell acts as a membrane that controls the transport of metabolites. Although a structural model exists for the carboxysome shell, it remains largely unknown how the shell proteins self-assemble. Understanding the self-assembly process can provide insights into how the shell affects the carboxysome's function and how it can be modified to create new functionalities, such as artificial nanoreactors and artificial protein membranes. Here, we describe a theoretical framework that employs Monte Carlo simulations with a coarse-grain potential that reproduces well the atomistic potential of mean force; employing this framework, we are able to capture the initial stages of the 2D self-assembly of CcmK2 hexamers, a major protein-shell component of the carboxysome's facet. The simulations reveal that CcmK2 hexamers self-assemble into clusters that resemble what was seen experimentally in 2D layers. Further analysis of the simulation results suggests that the 2D self-assembly of carboxysome's facets is driven by a nucleation-growth process, which in turn could play an important role in the hierarchical self-assembly of BMC shells in general. PMID:26906087

  14. Nanostructured films from hierarchical self-assembly of amyloidogenic proteins

    PubMed Central

    Knowles, Tuomas P. J.; Oppenheim, Tomas W.; Buell, Alexander K.; Chirgadze, Dimitri Y.; Welland, Mark E.

    2015-01-01

    In nature, sophisticated functional materials are created through hierarchical self-assembly of simple nanoscale motifs1–4. In the laboratory, much progress has been made in the controlled assembly of molecules into one-5–7, two-6,8,9 and three-dimensional10 artificial nanostructures, but bridging from the nanoscale to the macroscale to create useful macroscopic materials remains a challenge. Here we show a scalable self-assembly approach to making free-standing films from amyloid protein fibrils. The films were well ordered and highly rigid, with a Young’s modulus of up to 5–7 GPa, which is comparable to the highest values for proteinaceous materials found in nature. We show that the self-organizing protein scaffolds can align otherwise unstructured components (such as fluorophores) within the macroscopic films. Multiscale self-assembly that relies on highly specific biomolecular interactions is an attractive path for realizing new multifunctional materials built from the bottom up. PMID:20190750

  15. Replication of Leaf Surface Structures for Light Harvesting

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Zhongjia; Yang, Sai; Zhang, Hui; Zhang, Meng; Cao, Wei

    2015-01-01

    As one of the most important hosts of natural light harvesting, foliage normally has complicated surface structures to capture solar radiances. Bio-mimicking leaf surface structures can provide novel designs of covers in photovoltaic systems. In this article, we reported on replicating leaf surface structures on poly-(methyl methacrylate) polymers to prompt harvesting efficiencies. Prepared via a double transfer process, the polymers were found to have high optical transparencies and transmission hazes, with both values exceeding 80% in some species. Benefiting from optical properties and wrinkled surfaces, the biomimetic polymers brought up to 17% gains to photovoltaic efficiencies. Through Monte-Carlo simulations of light transport, ultrahigh haze values and low reflections were attributed to lightwave guidance schemes lead by the nano- and micro-morphologies which are inherited from master leaves. Thus, leaf surface bio-mimicking can be considered as a strategic direction to design covers of light harvesting systems. PMID:26381702

  16. Replication of Leaf Surface Structures for Light Harvesting.

    PubMed

    Huang, Zhongjia; Yang, Sai; Zhang, Hui; Zhang, Meng; Cao, Wei

    2015-01-01

    As one of the most important hosts of natural light harvesting, foliage normally has complicated surface structures to capture solar radiances. Bio-mimicking leaf surface structures can provide novel designs of covers in photovoltaic systems. In this article, we reported on replicating leaf surface structures on poly-(methyl methacrylate) polymers to prompt harvesting efficiencies. Prepared via a double transfer process, the polymers were found to have high optical transparencies and transmission hazes, with both values exceeding 80% in some species. Benefiting from optical properties and wrinkled surfaces, the biomimetic polymers brought up to 17% gains to photovoltaic efficiencies. Through Monte-Carlo simulations of light transport, ultrahigh haze values and low reflections were attributed to lightwave guidance schemes lead by the nano- and micro-morphologies which are inherited from master leaves. Thus, leaf surface bio-mimicking can be considered as a strategic direction to design covers of light harvesting systems. PMID:26381702

  17. Adaptive soft molecular self-assemblies.

    PubMed

    Wang, Andong; Shi, Wenyue; Huang, Jianbin; Yan, Yun

    2016-01-14

    Adaptive molecular self-assemblies provide possibility of constructing smart and functional materials in a non-covalent bottom-up manner. Exploiting the intrinsic properties of responsiveness of non-covalent interactions, a great number of fancy self-assemblies have been achieved. In this review, we try to highlight the recent advances in this field. The following contents are focused: (1) environmental adaptiveness, including smart self-assemblies adaptive to pH, temperature, pressure, and moisture; (2) special chemical adaptiveness, including nanostructures adaptive to important chemicals, such as enzymes, CO2, metal ions, redox agents, explosives, biomolecules; (3) field adaptiveness, including self-assembled materials that are capable of adapting to external fields such as magnetic field, electric field, light irradiation, and shear forces. PMID:26509717

  18. Light-harvesting materials: Soft support for energy conversion

    SciTech Connect

    Stolley, Ryan M.; Helm, Monte L.

    2014-11-10

    To convert solar energy into viable fuel sources, coupling light-harvesting materials to catalysts is a critical challenge. Now, coupling between an organic supramolecular hydrogel and a non precious metal catalyst has been demonstrated to be effective for photocatalytic H2 production. Ryan M. Stolley and Monte L. Helm are at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA, USA 99352. PNNL is operated by Battelle for the US Department of Energy. e-mail: Monte.Helm@pnnl.gov

  19. Directed Self-Assembly of Nanodispersions

    SciTech Connect

    Furst, Eric M

    2013-11-15

    Directed self-assembly promises to be the technologically and economically optimal approach to industrial-scale nanotechnology, and will enable the realization of inexpensive, reproducible and active nanostructured materials with tailored photonic, transport and mechanical properties. These new nanomaterials will play a critical role in meeting the 21st century grand challenges of the US, including energy diversity and sustainability, national security and economic competitiveness. The goal of this work was to develop and fundamentally validate methods of directed selfassembly of nanomaterials and nanodispersion processing. The specific aims were: 1. Nanocolloid self-assembly and interactions in AC electric fields. In an effort to reduce the particle sizes used in AC electric field self-assembly to lengthscales, we propose detailed characterizations of field-driven structures and studies of the fundamental underlying particle interactions. We will utilize microscopy and light scattering to assess order-disorder transitions and self-assembled structures under a variety of field and physicochemical conditions. Optical trapping will be used to measure particle interactions. These experiments will be synergetic with calculations of the particle polarizability, enabling us to both validate interactions and predict the order-disorder transition for nanocolloids. 2. Assembly of anisotropic nanocolloids. Particle shape has profound effects on structure and flow behavior of dispersions, and greatly complicates their processing and self-assembly. The methods developed to study the self-assembled structures and underlying particle interactions for dispersions of isotropic nanocolloids will be extended to systems composed of anisotropic particles. This report reviews several key advances that have been made during this project, including, (1) advances in the measurement of particle polarization mechanisms underlying field-directed self-assembly, and (2) progress in the

  20. From Solvolysis to Self-Assembly*

    PubMed Central

    Stang, Peter J.

    2009-01-01

    My sojourn from classical physical-organic chemistry and solvolysis to self-assembly and supramolecular chemistry, over the last forty years, is described. My contributions to unsaturated reactive intermediates, namely vinyl cations and unsaturated carbenes, along with my decade long involvement with polyvalent iodine chemistry, especially alkynyliodonium salts, as well as my more recent research with metal-ligand, coordination driven and directed self-assembly of finite supramolecular ensembles are discussed. PMID:19111062

  1. Light harvesting of silicon nanostructure for solar cells application.

    PubMed

    Li, Yingfeng; Yue, Luo; Luo, Younan; Liu, Wenjian; Li, Meicheng

    2016-07-11

    Silicon nanostructures have light-harvesting effects for enhancing the performance of solar cells. Based on theoretical investigations on the optical properties of silicon nanowire (Si NW), the influencing laws of the size of Si NW on its light-harvesting effect are proposed. For the first time, we reveal that the resonant wavelength of Si NW predicted by the leaky mode theory does not correspond to the actual resonant wavelength calculated by the discrete dipole approximation method, but exactly coincides with the leftmost wavelength of the resonance peak. Then, the size dependency of the resonant intensity and width of Si NW is different from that of spherical nanoparticles, which can be deduced from the Mie theory. The size dependencies of resonant intensity and width are also applicative for silver/silicon composite nanowires. In addition, it is found that the harvested light by the Si and Ag/Si NW both show significant radial locality feature. The insight in this work is fundamental for the design and fabrication of efficient light -harvesting nanostructures for photovoltaic devices. PMID:27410895

  2. Designing artificial photosynthetic devices using hybrid organic-inorganic modules based on polyoxometalates.

    PubMed

    Symes, Mark D; Cogdell, Richard J; Cronin, Leroy

    2013-08-13

    Artificial photosynthesis aims at capturing solar energy and using it to produce storable fuels. However, while there is reason to be optimistic that such approaches can deliver higher energy conversion efficiencies than natural photosynthetic systems, many serious challenges remain to be addressed. Perhaps chief among these is the issue of device stability. Almost all approaches to artificial photosynthesis employ easily oxidized organic molecules as light harvesters or in catalytic centres, frequently in solution with highly oxidizing species. The 'elephant in the room' in this regard is that oxidation of these organic moieties is likely to occur at least as rapidly as oxidation of water, meaning that current device performance is severely curtailed. Herein, we discuss one possible solution to this problem: using self-assembling organic-polyoxometalate hybrid structures to produce compartments inside which the individual component reactions of photosynthesis can occur without such a high incidence of deleterious side reactions. PMID:23816903

  3. Silk Reconstitution Disrupts Fibroin Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Koebley, Sean R; Thorpe, Daniel; Pang, Pei; Chrisochoides, Panos; Greving, Imke; Vollrath, Fritz; Schniepp, Hannes C

    2015-09-14

    Using atomic force microscopy, we present the first molecular-scale comparison of two of the most important silk dopes, native (NSF) and reconstituted (RSF) silkworm fibroin. We found that both systems depended on shear to show self-assembly. Significant differences in the nature of self-assembly between NSF and RSF were shown. In the highest studied concentration of 1000 mg/L, NSF exhibited assembly into 20-30 nm-wide nanofibrils closely resembling the surface structures found in natural silk fibers. RSF, in contrast, showed no self-assembly whatsoever at the same concentration, which suggests that the reconstitution process significantly disrupts silk's inherent self-assembly capability. At lower concentrations, both RSF and NSF formed fibrils under shear, apparently denatured by the substrate. Using image analysis, we quantified the properties of these self-assembled fibrils as a function of concentration and found low-concentration fibrils of NSF to form larger continuous structures than those of RSF, further supporting NSF's superior self-assembly capabilities. PMID:26284914

  4. Electronic instabilities in self-assembled atom wires

    SciTech Connect

    Snijders, Paul C; Weitering, Harm H

    2010-01-01

    Low dimensional systems have fascinated physicists for a long time due to their unusual properties such as charge fractionalization, semionic statistics, and Luttinger liquid behavior among others. In nature, however, low dimensional systems often suffer from thermal fluctuations that can make these systems structurally unstable. Human beings, however, can trick nature by producing artificial structures which are not naturally produced. This Colloquium reviews the problem of self-assembled atomic wires on solid surfaces from an experimental and theoretical point of view. These materials represent a class of one-dimensional systems with very unusual properties that can open doors to the study of exotic physics that cannot be studied otherwise.

  5. Characterization and deposition of various light-harvesting antenna complexes by electrospray atomization.

    PubMed

    Shah, Vivek B; Orf, Gregory S; Reisch, Sean; Harrington, Lucas B; Prado, Mindy; Blankenship, Robert E; Biswas, Pratim

    2012-11-01

    Photosynthetic organisms have light-harvesting complexes that absorb and transfer energy efficiently to reaction centers. Light-harvesting complexes (LHCs) have received increased attention in order to understand the natural photosynthetic process and also to utilize their unique properties in fabricating efficient artificial and bio-hybrid devices to capture solar energy. In this work, LHCs with different architectures, sizes, and absorption spectra, such as chlorosomes, Fenna-Matthews-Olson (FMO) protein, LH2 complex, and phycobilisome have been characterized by an electrospray-scanning mobility particle-sizer system (ES-SMPS). The size measured by ES-SMPS for FMO, chlorosomes, LH2, and phycobilisome were 6.4, 23.3, 9.5, and 33.4 nm, respectively. These size measurements were compared with values measured by dynamic light scattering and those reported in the literature. These complexes were deposited onto a transparent substrate by electrospray deposition. Absorption and fluorescence spectra of the deposited LHCs were measured. It was observed that the LHCs have light absorption and fluorescence spectra similar to that in solution, demonstrating the viability of the process. PMID:22983169

  6. Early events in the biosynthesis and assembly of the cyanobacterial light-harvesting system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Lamont

    1996-02-01

    The cyanobacteria are photosynthetic procaryotes that employ a mechanism of photosynthesis which is essentially identical to the systems found in plant chloroplasts and the eukaryotic green algae. Cyanobacteria can drive photosynthesis with light energy from a broad region of the visible spectrum (500 - 650 nm wavelength) that is not available to plants and green algae, which are limited to the narrow band of light energy that is absorbed by chlorophyll (660-680 nm). The light-harvesting capacity of the cyanobacteria is a function of a complex protein structure that resides on the surface of the photosynthetic membrane in contact with the PSII chlorophyll reaction centers. This light-harvesting complex is called a phycobilisome and functions as a protein scaffold for a rigid array of chromophores that absorbs light energy and transfers it to chlorophyll. The chromophores are linear tetrapyrroles (the bilins) that are covalently attached to the biliproteins, which comprise 80 - 85% of the total phycobilisome mass. There are three major classes of spectrally distinct biliproteins [phycoerythrin (PE), (lambda) max equals 565 nm; phycocyanin (PC), (lambda) max equals 617 nm; and allophycocyanin (AP), (lambda) max equals 650 nm] and their spatial organization within the phycobilisome creates an array of donor and acceptor chromophores that is optimized for resonance energy transfer to chlorophyll on a picosecond timescale and at close to 100% efficiency. The cyanobacteria can exert control over the biliprotein composition of the phycobilisomes in response to both light quality and light quantity, and they do so primarily by light-responsive transcription control mechanisms. The biosynthesis and assembly of a phycobilisome is an interesting example of self-assembly in a complex protein system. A phycobilisome from Synechocystis sp. strain 6701 can contain 400 proteins derived from a repertoire of 16 different polypeptides that includes the (alpha) and (beta) subunits for

  7. Recent Progress on Bioinspired Self-Propelled Micro/Nanomotors via Controlled Molecular Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Wu, Zhiguang; Lin, Xiankun; Si, Tieyan; He, Qiang

    2016-06-01

    The combination of bottom-up controllable self-assembly technique with bioinspired design has opened new horizons in the development of self-propelled synthetic micro/nanomotors. Over the past five years, a significant advances toward the construction of bioinspired self-propelled micro/nanomotors has been witnessed based on the controlled self-assembly technique. Such a strategy permits the realization of autonomously synthetic motors with engineering features, such as sizes, shapes, composition, propulsion mechanism, and function. The construction, propulsion mechanism, and movement control of synthetic micro/nanomotors in connection with controlled self-assembly in recent research activities are summarized. These assembled nanomotors are expected to have a tremendous impact on current artificial nanomachines in future and hold potential promise for biomedical applications including drug targeted delivery, photothermal cancer therapy, biodetoxification, treatment of atherosclerosis, artificial insemination, crushing kidney stones, cleaning wounds, and removing blood clots and parasites. PMID:27073065

  8. Synthesis and photophysical studies of self-assembled multicomponent supramolecular coordination prisms bearing porphyrin faces

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Yanhui; Sánchez-Molina, Irene; Cao, Changsheng; Cook, Timothy R.; Stang, Peter J.

    2014-01-01

    Multicomponent self-assembly, wherein two unique donor precursors are combined with a single metal acceptor instead of the more common two-component assembly, can be achieved by selecting Lewis-basic sites and metal nodes that select for heteroligated coordination spheres. Platinum(II) ions show a thermodynamic preference for mixed pyridyl/carboxylate coordination environments and are thus suitable for such designs. The use of three or more unique building blocks increases the structural complexity of supramolecules. Herein, we describe the synthesis and characterization of rectangular prismatic supramolecular coordination complexes (SCCs) with two faces occupied by porphyrin molecules, motivated by the search for new multichromophore complexes with promising light-harvesting properties. These prisms are obtained from the self-assembly of a 90° Pt(II) acceptor with a meso-substituted tetrapyridylporphyrin (TPyP) and dicarboxylate ligands. The generality of this self-assembly reaction is demonstrated using five dicarboxylate ligands, two based on a rigid central phenyl ring and three alkyl-spaced variants, to form a total of five free-base and five Zn-metallated porphyrin prisms. All 10 SCCs are characterized by 31P and 1H multinuclear NMR spectroscopy and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry, confirming the structure of each self-assembly and the stoichiometry of formation. The photophysical properties of the resulting SCCs were investigated revealing that the absorption and emission properties of the free-base and metallated porphyrin prisms preserve the spectral features associated with free TPyP. PMID:24979805

  9. Synthesis and photophysical studies of self-assembled multicomponent supramolecular coordination prisms bearing porphyrin faces.

    PubMed

    Shi, Yanhui; Sánchez-Molina, Irene; Cao, Changsheng; Cook, Timothy R; Stang, Peter J

    2014-07-01

    Multicomponent self-assembly, wherein two unique donor precursors are combined with a single metal acceptor instead of the more common two-component assembly, can be achieved by selecting Lewis-basic sites and metal nodes that select for heteroligated coordination spheres. Platinum(II) ions show a thermodynamic preference for mixed pyridyl/carboxylate coordination environments and are thus suitable for such designs. The use of three or more unique building blocks increases the structural complexity of supramolecules. Herein, we describe the synthesis and characterization of rectangular prismatic supramolecular coordination complexes (SCCs) with two faces occupied by porphyrin molecules, motivated by the search for new multichromophore complexes with promising light-harvesting properties. These prisms are obtained from the self-assembly of a 90° Pt(II) acceptor with a meso-substituted tetrapyridylporphyrin (TPyP) and dicarboxylate ligands. The generality of this self-assembly reaction is demonstrated using five dicarboxylate ligands, two based on a rigid central phenyl ring and three alkyl-spaced variants, to form a total of five free-base and five Zn-metallated porphyrin prisms. All 10 SCCs are characterized by (31)P and (1)H multinuclear NMR spectroscopy and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry, confirming the structure of each self-assembly and the stoichiometry of formation. The photophysical properties of the resulting SCCs were investigated revealing that the absorption and emission properties of the free-base and metallated porphyrin prisms preserve the spectral features associated with free TPyP. PMID:24979805

  10. Molecular self-assembly approaches for supramolecular electronic and organic electronic devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yip, Hin-Lap

    Molecular self-assembly represents an efficient bottom-up strategy to generate structurally well-defined aggregates of semiconducting pi-conjugated materials. The capability of tuning the chemical structures, intermolecular interactions and nanostructures through molecular engineering and novel materials processing renders it possible to tailor a large number of unprecedented properties such as charge transport, energy transfer and light harvesting. This approach does not only benefit traditional electronic devices based on bulk materials, but also generate a new research area so called "supramolecular electronics" in which electronic devices are built up with individual supramolecular nanostructures with size in the sub-hundred nanometers range. My work combined molecular self-assembly together with several novel materials processing techniques to control the nucleation and growth of organic semiconducting nanostructures from different type of pi-conjugated materials. By tailoring the interactions between the molecules using hydrogen bonds and pi-pi stacking, semiconducting nanoplatelets and nanowires with tunable sizes can be fabricated in solution. These supramolecular nanostructures were further patterned and aligned on solid substrates through printing and chemical templating methods. The capability to control the different hierarchies of organization on surface provides an important platform to study their structural-induced electronic properties. In addition to using molecular self-assembly to create different organic nanostructures, functional self-assembled monolayer (SAM) formed by spontaneous chemisorption on surfaces was used to tune the interfacial property in organic solar cells. Devices showed dramatically improved performance when appropriate SAMs were applied to optimize the contact property for efficiency charge collection.

  11. Directed self-assembly of performance materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nealey, Paul

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) is a promising strategy for high-volume cost-effective manufacturing at the nanoscale. Over the past decades, manufacturing techniques have been developed with such remarkable efficiency that it is now possible to engineer complex systems of heterogeneous materials at the scale of a few tens of nanometers. Further evolution of these techniques, however, is faced with difficult challenges not only in feasibility of implementation at scales of 10 nm and below, but also in prohibitively high capital equipment costs. Materials that self-assemble, on the other hand, spontaneously form structures at the mesoscale, but the micrometer areas or volumes over which the materials self-assemble with adequate perfection in structure is incommensurate with the macroscopic dimensions of working devices and systems of devices of industrial relevance. Directed Self-Assembly (DSA) refers to the integration of self-assembling materials with traditional manufacturing processes. Here we will discuss DSA of block copolymers to revolutionize sub 10 nm lithography and the manufacture of integrated circuits and storage media, DSA of ex-situ synthesized nanoparticles for applications in nanophotonics, and DSA of liquid crystals for advanced optics.

  12. Formation of the light-harvesting complex I (B870) of anoxygenic phototrophic purple bacteria.

    PubMed

    Drews, G

    1996-09-01

    adjust to changes in oxygen tension, light intensity, temperature, and substrates to grow under chemotrophic or phototrophic conditions. The photosynthetic apparatus (PSA), localized mainly on intracytoplasmic membranes (ICM), is usually synthesized only under low oxygen partial pressure. The cellular amount and composition of the PSA are modified upon changing light intensity in relation to cell growth (Drews and Golecki 1995). The morphogenesis of cellular structures like ICM is quite different from self-assembly. Self-assembly is a reversible process of aggregation of the constituents of a complex structure without protein synthesis and is driven by weak or strong forces in the interactions of the constituents. Morphogenesis results from the interplay of numerous gene products and the cellular organization and is always dependent upon pre-existent structures (Harold 1995). The morphogenesis of the photosynthetic membrane in purple bacteria has been studied in its different steps. The regulation at the transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels in purple bacteria, and the structure and morphogenesis of the ICM have been described recently (Armstrong 1995; Bauer 1995; Biel 1995; Drews and Golecki 1995; Klug 1995). In this mini-review, I will focus on the minimal requirements for the in vitro assembly of light-harvesting (LH) complex I (B870) from its constituents in detergent micelles and compare the results with observations on the complex process of targeting and import of LHI polypeptides into the membrane and assembly of B870. PMID:8703191

  13. Electronic coherence and the kinetics of energy transfer in light-harvesting systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huo, Pengfei; Coker, David; Miller, Thomas

    Recent 2D-spectroscopy experiments have observed transient electronic coherence in natural and artificial light harvesting systems, which raises questions about the role of electronic coherence in facilitating excitation energy transfer (EET) processes. In this talk, we introduce the recently developed partial linearized path-integral (PLPI) method, which can accurately simulate exciton transfer dynamics across multiple reaction regimes, as well as reliably describe the electronic coherence among excitonic states. Further, we develop a strategy that enables the analysis of the relative impact of static and dynamic electronic coherence. With PLPI simulations, we find that energy transfer dynamics are almost entirely dominated by static coherence effects; dynamic coherence is found to cause only minor effects. These conclusions are consistent with the historical view that emphasizes the importance of energy-level alignment for efficient incoherent energy transfer,while suggesting a less important role for more exotic electronic coherence effects that have been recently emphasized.

  14. Beta-Sheet-Forming, Self-Assembled Peptide Nanomaterials towards Optical, Energy, and Healthcare Applications.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sungjin; Kim, Jae Hong; Lee, Joon Seok; Park, Chan Beum

    2015-08-12

    Peptide self-assembly is an attractive route for the synthesis of intricate organic nanostructures that possess remarkable structural variety and biocompatibility. Recent studies on peptide-based, self-assembled materials have expanded beyond the construction of high-order architectures; they are now reporting new functional materials that have application in the emerging fields such as artificial photosynthesis and rechargeable batteries. Nevertheless, there have been few reviews particularly concentrating on such versatile, emerging applications. Herein, recent advances in the synthesis of self-assembled peptide nanomaterials (e.g., cross β-sheet-based amyloid nanostructures, peptide amphiphiles) are selectively reviewed and their new applications in diverse, interdisciplinary fields are described, ranging from optics and energy storage/conversion to healthcare. The applications of peptide-based self-assembled materials in unconventional fields are also highlighted, such as photoluminescent peptide nanostructures, artificial photosynthetic peptide nanomaterials, and lithium-ion battery components. The relation of such functional materials to the rapidly progressing biomedical applications of peptide self-assembly, which include biosensors/chips and regenerative medicine, are discussed. The combination of strategies shown in these applications would further promote the discovery of novel, functional, small materials. PMID:25929870

  15. Self-Assembly of Peptides to Nanostructures

    PubMed Central

    Mandal, Dindyal; Shirazi, Amir Nasrolahi; Parang, Keykavous

    2014-01-01

    The formation of well-ordered nanostructures through self-assembly of diverse organic and inorganic building blocks has drawn much attention owing to their potential applications in biology and chemistry. Among all organic building blocks, peptides are one of the most promising platforms due to their biocompatibility, chemical diversity, and resemblance with proteins. Inspired from the protein assembly in biological systems, various self-assembled peptide structures have been constructed using several amino acids and sequences. This review focuses on this emerging area, the recent advances in peptide self-assembly, and formation of different nanostructures, such as tubular, fibers, vesicles, spherical, and rod coil structures. While different peptide nanostructures are discovered, potential applications will be explored in drug delivery, tissue engineering, wound healing, and surfactants. PMID:24756480

  16. Self-assembly of nanocomposite materials

    DOEpatents

    Brinker, C. Jeffrey; Sellinger, Alan; Lu, Yunfeng

    2001-01-01

    A method of making a nanocomposite self-assembly is provided where at least one hydrophilic compound, at least one hydrophobic compound, and at least one amphiphilic surfactant are mixed in an aqueous solvent with the solvent subsequently evaporated to form a self-assembled liquid crystalline mesophase material. Upon polymerization of the hydrophilic and hydrophobic compounds, a robust nanocomposite self-assembled material is formed. Importantly, in the reaction mixture, the amphiphilic surfactant has an initial concentration below the critical micelle concentration to allow formation of the liquid-phase micellar mesophase material. A variety of nanocomposite structures can be formed, depending upon the solvent evaporazation process, including layered mesophases, tubular mesophases, and a hierarchical composite coating composed of an isotropic worm-like micellar overlayer bonded to an oriented, nanolaminated underlayer.

  17. From self-assembled vesicles to protocells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Irene A; Walde, Peter

    2010-07-01

    Self-assembled vesicles are essential components of primitive cells. We review the importance of vesicles during the origins of life, fundamental thermodynamics and kinetics of self-assembly, and experimental models of simple vesicles, focusing on prebiotically plausible fatty acids and their derivatives. We review recent work on interactions of simple vesicles with RNA and other studies of the transition from vesicles to protocells. Finally we discuss current challenges in understanding the biophysics of protocells, as well as conceptual questions in information transmission and self-replication. PMID:20519344

  18. From Self-Assembled Vesicles to Protocells

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Irene A.; Walde, Peter

    2010-01-01

    Self-assembled vesicles are essential components of primitive cells. We review the importance of vesicles during the origins of life, fundamental thermodynamics and kinetics of self-assembly, and experimental models of simple vesicles, focusing on prebiotically plausible fatty acids and their derivatives. We review recent work on interactions of simple vesicles with RNA and other studies of the transition from vesicles to protocells. Finally we discuss current challenges in understanding the biophysics of protocells, as well as conceptual questions in information transmission and self-replication. PMID:20519344

  19. Remote control of self-assembled microswimmers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grosjean, G.; Lagubeau, G.; Darras, A.; Hubert, M.; Lumay, G.; Vandewalle, N.

    2015-11-01

    Physics governing the locomotion of microorganisms and other microsystems is dominated by viscous damping. An effective swimming strategy involves the non-reciprocal and periodic deformations of the considered body. Here, we show that a magnetocapillary-driven self-assembly, composed of three soft ferromagnetic beads, is able to swim along a liquid-air interface when powered by an external magnetic field. More importantly, we demonstrate that trajectories can be fully controlled, opening ways to explore low Reynolds number swimming. This magnetocapillary system spontaneously forms by self-assembly, allowing miniaturization and other possible applications such as cargo transport or solvent flows.

  20. Computing by molecular self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Jonoska, Nataša; Seeman, Nadrian C.

    2012-01-01

    The paper reviews two computing models by DNA self-assembly whose proof of principal have recently been experimentally confirmed. The first model incorporates DNA nano-devices and triple crossover DNA molecules to algorithmically arrange non-DNA species. This is achieved by simulating a finite-state automaton with output where golden nanoparticles are assembled to read-out the result. In the second model, a complex DNA molecule representing a graph emerges as a solution of a computational problem. This supports the idea that in molecular self-assembly computing, it may be necessary to develop the notion of shape processing besides the classical approach through symbol processing. PMID:23919130

  1. Self-assembly of chlorophenols in water

    PubMed Central

    Rogalska, Ewa; Rogalski, Marek; Gulik-Krzywicki, Tadeusz; Gulik, Annette; Chipot, Christophe

    1999-01-01

    In saturated solutions of some di- and trichlorophenols, structures with complex morphologies, consisting of thin, transparent sheets often coiling into helices and ultimately twisting into filaments, were observed under the optical microscope. Freeze-fracture electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, phase diagrams, and molecular modeling were performed to elucidate the observed phenomena. Here, we present evidence that the chlorophenols studied, when interacting with water, self-assemble into bilayers. The fact that some chlorophenols form the same supramolecular structures as those described previously for structurally nonrelated surfactants sheds light on the mechanisms of self-assembly. PMID:10359753

  2. Remote control of self-assembled microswimmers

    PubMed Central

    Grosjean, G.; Lagubeau, G.; Darras, A.; Hubert, M.; Lumay, G.; Vandewalle, N.

    2015-01-01

    Physics governing the locomotion of microorganisms and other microsystems is dominated by viscous damping. An effective swimming strategy involves the non-reciprocal and periodic deformations of the considered body. Here, we show that a magnetocapillary-driven self-assembly, composed of three soft ferromagnetic beads, is able to swim along a liquid-air interface when powered by an external magnetic field. More importantly, we demonstrate that trajectories can be fully controlled, opening ways to explore low Reynolds number swimming. This magnetocapillary system spontaneously forms by self-assembly, allowing miniaturization and other possible applications such as cargo transport or solvent flows. PMID:26538006

  3. Nondeterministic self-assembly with asymmetric interactions.

    PubMed

    Tesoro, S; Göpfrich, K; Kartanas, T; Keyser, U F; Ahnert, S E

    2016-08-01

    We investigate general properties of nondeterministic self-assembly with asymmetric interactions, using a computational model and DNA tile assembly experiments. By contrasting symmetric and asymmetric interactions we show that the latter can lead to self-limiting cluster growth. Furthermore, by adjusting the relative abundance of self-assembly particles in a two-particle mixture, we are able to tune the final sizes of these clusters. We show that this is a fundamental property of asymmetric interactions, which has potential applications in bioengineering, and provides insights into the study of diseases caused by protein aggregation. PMID:27627332

  4. Nondeterministic self-assembly with asymmetric interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tesoro, S.; Göpfrich, K.; Kartanas, T.; Keyser, U. F.; Ahnert, S. E.

    2016-08-01

    We investigate general properties of nondeterministic self-assembly with asymmetric interactions, using a computational model and DNA tile assembly experiments. By contrasting symmetric and asymmetric interactions we show that the latter can lead to self-limiting cluster growth. Furthermore, by adjusting the relative abundance of self-assembly particles in a two-particle mixture, we are able to tune the final sizes of these clusters. We show that this is a fundamental property of asymmetric interactions, which has potential applications in bioengineering, and provides insights into the study of diseases caused by protein aggregation.

  5. Architecture and function of plant light-harvesting complexes II.

    PubMed

    Pan, Xiaowei; Liu, Zhenfeng; Li, Mei; Chang, Wenrui

    2013-08-01

    The antenna system associated with plant photosystem II (PSII) comprises a series of light-harvesting complexes II (LHCIIs) which are supramolecular assemblies of chlorophylls, carotenoids, lipids and integral membrane proteins. These complexes not only function in capturing and transmitting light energy, but also have pivotal roles in photoprotection under high-light conditions through a mechanism known as non-photochemical quenching process. Among them, the most abundant major species (majLHCII) is located at the periphery of PSII and forms homo/hetero-trimers. Besides, three minor species, named CP29, CP26 and CP24, are adjacent to the PSII core, exist in monomeric form and bridge the majLHCII trimers with the core complex. Structural studies on majLHCII and CP29 have revealed the overall architecture of plant LHC family, the binding sites of pigment molecules and the distribution pattern of chromophores in three-dimensional space. The high-resolution structural data of LHCIIs serve as fundamental bases for an improved understanding on the mechanisms of light harvesting, energy transfer and photoprotection processes in plants. PMID:23623335

  6. Molecular and Interfacial Calculations of Iron(II) Light Harvesters.

    PubMed

    Fredin, Lisa A; Wärnmark, Kenneth; Sundström, Villy; Persson, Petter

    2016-04-01

    Iron-carbene complexes show considerable promise as earth-abundant light-harvesters, and adsorption onto nanostructured TiO2 is a crucial step for developing solar energy applications. Intrinsic electron injection capabilities of such promising Fe(II) N-heterocyclic complexes (Fe-NHC) to TiO2 are calculated here, and found to correlate well with recent experimental findings of highly efficient interfacial injection. First, we examine the special bonding characteristics of Fe-NHC light harvesters. The excited-state surfaces are examined using density functional theory (DFT) and time-dependent DFT (TD-DFT) to explore relaxed excited-state properties. Finally, by relaxing an Fe-NHC adsorbed on a TiO2 nanocluster, we show favorable injection properties in terms of interfacial energy level alignment and electronic coupling suitable for efficient electron injection of excited electrons from the Fe complex into the TiO2 conduction band on ∼100 fs time scales. PMID:27010851

  7. Green grasses as light harvesters in dye sensitized solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shanmugam, Vinoth; Manoharan, Subbaiah; Sharafali, A.; Anandan, Sambandam; Murugan, Ramaswamy

    2015-01-01

    Chlorophylls, the major pigments presented in plants are responsible for the process of photosynthesis. The working principle of dye sensitized solar cell (DSSC) is analogous to natural photosynthesis in light-harvesting and charge separation. In a similar way, natural dyes extracted from three types of grasses viz. Hierochloe Odorata (HO), Torulinium Odoratum (TO) and Dactyloctenium Aegyptium (DA) were used as light harvesters in dye sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The UV-Vis absorption spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR), and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) were used to characterize the dyes. The electron transport mechanism and internal resistance of the DSSCs were investigated by the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). The performance of the cells fabricated with the grass extract shows comparable efficiencies with the reported natural dyes. Among the three types of grasses, the DSSC fabricated with the dye extracted from Hierochloe Odorata (HO) exhibited the maximum efficiency. LC-MS investigations indicated that the dominant pigment present in HO dye was pheophytin a (Pheo a).

  8. Ultrafast energy relaxation in single light-harvesting complexes

    PubMed Central

    Malý, Pavel; Gruber, J. Michael; Cogdell, Richard J.; Mančal, Tomáš; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-01-01

    Energy relaxation in light-harvesting complexes has been extensively studied by various ultrafast spectroscopic techniques, the fastest processes being in the sub–100-fs range. At the same time, much slower dynamics have been observed in individual complexes by single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy (SMS). In this work, we use a pump–probe-type SMS technique to observe the ultrafast energy relaxation in single light-harvesting complexes LH2 of purple bacteria. After excitation at 800 nm, the measured relaxation time distribution of multiple complexes has a peak at 95 fs and is asymmetric, with a tail at slower relaxation times. When tuning the excitation wavelength, the distribution changes in both its shape and position. The observed behavior agrees with what is to be expected from the LH2 excited states structure. As we show by a Redfield theory calculation of the relaxation times, the distribution shape corresponds to the expected effect of Gaussian disorder of the pigment transition energies. By repeatedly measuring few individual complexes for minutes, we find that complexes sample the relaxation time distribution on a timescale of seconds. Furthermore, by comparing the distribution from a single long-lived complex with the whole ensemble, we demonstrate that, regarding the relaxation times, the ensemble can be considered ergodic. Our findings thus agree with the commonly used notion of an ensemble of identical LH2 complexes experiencing slow random fluctuations. PMID:26903650

  9. Ultrafast energy relaxation in single light-harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Malý, Pavel; Gruber, J Michael; Cogdell, Richard J; Mančal, Tomáš; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-03-15

    Energy relaxation in light-harvesting complexes has been extensively studied by various ultrafast spectroscopic techniques, the fastest processes being in the sub-100-fs range. At the same time, much slower dynamics have been observed in individual complexes by single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy (SMS). In this work, we use a pump-probe-type SMS technique to observe the ultrafast energy relaxation in single light-harvesting complexes LH2 of purple bacteria. After excitation at 800 nm, the measured relaxation time distribution of multiple complexes has a peak at 95 fs and is asymmetric, with a tail at slower relaxation times. When tuning the excitation wavelength, the distribution changes in both its shape and position. The observed behavior agrees with what is to be expected from the LH2 excited states structure. As we show by a Redfield theory calculation of the relaxation times, the distribution shape corresponds to the expected effect of Gaussian disorder of the pigment transition energies. By repeatedly measuring few individual complexes for minutes, we find that complexes sample the relaxation time distribution on a timescale of seconds. Furthermore, by comparing the distribution from a single long-lived complex with the whole ensemble, we demonstrate that, regarding the relaxation times, the ensemble can be considered ergodic. Our findings thus agree with the commonly used notion of an ensemble of identical LH2 complexes experiencing slow random fluctuations. PMID:26903650

  10. Self-assembled supramolecular nanotube yarn.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yaqing; Wang, Tianyu; Huan, Yong; Li, Zhibo; He, Guowei; Liu, Minghua

    2013-11-01

    Metric length supramolecular nanotube yarns are fabricated though a spinning process from the diluted aqueous solution of self-assembled nanotubes, with bolaamphiphiles working as molecular building blocks. These non-covalent bonding based nanotube yarns show outstanding mechanical strength compared with some conventional polymers and could be operated under the macro conditions. PMID:23943418

  11. Self-assembly micro optical filter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Ping (Cerina); Le, Kevin; Malalur-Nagaraja-Rao, Smitha; Hsu, Lun-Chen; Chiao, J.-C.

    2006-01-01

    Optical communication and sensor industry face critical challenges in manufacturing for system integration. Due to the assembly complexity and integration platform variety, micro optical components require costly alignment and assembly procedures, in which many required manual efforts. Consequently, self-assembly device architectures have become a great interest and could provide major advantages over the conventional optical devices. In this paper, we discussed a self-assembly integration platform for micro optical components. To demonstrate the adaptability and flexibility of the proposed optical device architectures, we chose a commercially available MEMS fabrication foundry service - MUMPs (Multi-User MEMS Process). In this work, polysilicon layers of MUMPS are used as the 3-D structural material for construction of micro component framework and actuators. However, because the polysilicon has high absorption in the visible and near infrared wavelength ranges, it is not suitable for optical interaction. To demonstrate the required optical performance, hybrid integration of materials was proposed and implemented. Organic compound materials were applied on the silicon-based framework to form the required optical interfaces. Organic compounds provide good optical transparency, flexibility to form filters or lens and inexpensive manufacturing procedures. In this paper, we have demonstrated a micro optical filter integrated with self-assembly structures. We will discuss the self-assembly mechanism, optical filter designs, fabrication issues and results.

  12. Self-assembling materials for therapeutic delivery✩

    PubMed Central

    Branco, Monica C.; Schneider, Joel P.

    2009-01-01

    A growing number of medications must be administered through parenteral delivery, i.e., intravenous, intramuscular, or subcutaneous injection, to ensure effectiveness of the therapeutic. For some therapeutics, the use of delivery vehicles in conjunction with this delivery mechanism can improve drug efficacy and patient compliance. Macromolecular self-assembly has been exploited recently to engineer materials for the encapsulation and controlled delivery of therapeutics. Self-assembled materials offer the advantages of conventional crosslinked materials normally used for release, but also provide the ability to tailor specific bulk material properties, such as release profiles, at the molecular level via monomer design. As a result, the design of materials from the “bottom up” approach has generated a variety of supramolecular devices for biomedical applications. This review provides an overview of self-assembling molecules, their resultant structures, and their use in therapeutic delivery. It highlights the current progress in the design of polymer- and peptide-based self-assembled materials. PMID:19010748

  13. Self-assembled nanolaminate coatings (SV)

    SciTech Connect

    Fan, H.

    2012-03-01

    Sandia National Laboratories (Sandia) and Lockheed Martin Aeronautics (LM Aero) are collaborating to develop affordable, self-assembled, nanocomposite coatings and associated fabrication processes that will be tailored to Lockheed Martin product requirements. The purpose of this project is to develop a family of self-assembled coatings with properties tailored to specific performance requirements, such as antireflective (AR) optics, using Sandia-developed self-assembled techniques. The project met its objectives by development of a simple and economic self-assembly processes to fabricate multifunctional coatings. Specifically, materials, functionalization methods, and associated coating processes for single layer and multiple layers coatings have been developed to accomplish high reflective coatings, hydrophobic coatings, and anti-reflective coatings. Associated modeling and simulations have been developed to guide the coating designs for optimum optical performance. The accomplishments result in significant advantages of reduced costs, increased manufacturing freedom/producibility, improved logistics, and the incorporation of new technology solutions not possible with conventional technologies. These self-assembled coatings with tailored properties will significantly address LMC's needs and give LMC a significant competitive lead in new engineered materials. This work complements SNL's LDRD and BES programs aimed at developing multifunctional nanomaterials for microelectronics and optics as well as structure/property investigations of self-assembled nanomaterials. In addition, this project will provide SNL with new opportunities to develop and apply self-assembled nanocomposite optical coatings for use in the wavelength ranges of 3-5 and 8-12 micrometers, ranges of vital importance to military-based sensors and weapons. The SANC technologies will be applied to multiple programs within the LM Company including the F-35, F-22, ADP (Future Strike Bomber, UAV, UCAV

  14. Self-assembly of azide containing dipeptides.

    PubMed

    Yuran, Sivan; Razvag, Yair; Das, Priyadip; Reches, Meital

    2014-07-01

    Functional structures and materials are formed spontaneously in nature through the process of self-assembly. Mimicking this process in vitro will lead to the formation of new substances that would impact many areas including energy production and storage, biomaterials and implants, and drug delivery. The considerable structural diversity of peptides makes them appealing building blocks for self-assembly in vitro. This paper describes the self-assembly of three aromatic dipeptides containing an azide moiety: H-Phe(4-azido)-Phe(4-azido)-OH, H-Phe(4-azido)-Phe-OH, and H-Phe-Phe(4-azido)-OH. The peptide H-Phe(4-azido)-Phe(4-azido)-OH self-assembled into porous spherical structures, whereas the peptides H-Phe(4-azido)-Phe-OH and H-Phe-Phe(4-azido)-OH did not form any ordered structures under the examined experimental conditions. The azido group of the peptide can serve as a photo cross-linking agent upon irradiation with UV light. To examine the effect of this group and its activity on the self-assembled structures, we irradiated the assemblies in solution for different time periods. Using electron microscopy, we determined that the porous spherical assemblies formed by the peptide H-Phe(4-azido)-Phe(4-azido)-OH underwent a structural change upon irradiation. In addition, using FT-IR, we detected the chemical change of the peptide azido group. Moreover, using indentation experiments with atomic force microscopy, we showed that the Young's modulus of the spherical assemblies increased after 20 min of irradiation with UV light. Overall, irradiating the solution of the peptide assemblies containing the azido group resulted in a change both in the morphology and mechanical properties of the peptide-based structures. These ordered assemblies or their peptide monomer building blocks can potentially be incorporated into other peptide assemblies to generate stiffer and more stable materials. PMID:24889029

  15. Modeling coherent excitation energy transfer in photosynthetic light harvesting systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huo, Pengfei

    2011-12-01

    Recent non-linear spectroscopy experiments suggest the excitation energy transfer in some biological light harvesting systems initially occurs coherently. Treating such processes brings significant challenge for conventional theoretical tools that usually involve different approximations. In this dissertation, the recently developed Iterative Linearized Density Matrix (ILDM) propagation scheme, which is non-perturbative and non-Markovian is extended to study coherent excitation energy transfer in various light harvesting complexes. It is demonstrated that the ILDM approach can successfully describe the coherent beating of the site populations on model systems and gives quantitative agreement with both experimental results and the results of other theoretical methods have been developed recently to going beyond the usual approximations, thus providing a new reliable theoretical tool to study this phenomenon. This approach is used to investigate the excited energy transfer dynamics in various experimentally studied bacteria light harvesting complexes, such as Fenna-Matthews-Olsen (FMO) complex, Phycocyanin 645 (PC645). In these model calculations, quantitative agreement is found between computed de-coherence times and quantum beating pattens observed in the non-linear spectroscopy. As a result of these studies, it is concluded that the stochastic resonance behavior is important in determining the optimal throughput. To begin addressing possible mechanics for observed long de-coherence time, various models which include correlation between site energy fluctuations as well as correlation between site energy and inter-site coupling are developed. The influence of both types of correlation on the coherence and transfer rate is explored using with a two state system-bath hamiltonian parametrized to model the reaction center of Rhodobacter sphaeroides bacteria. To overcome the disadvantages of a fully reduced approach or a full propagation method, a brownian dynamics

  16. Pigment Interactions in Light-harvesting Complex II in Different Molecular Environments*

    PubMed Central

    Akhtar, Parveen; Dorogi, Márta; Pawlak, Krzysztof; Kovács, László; Bóta, Attila; Kiss, Teréz; Garab, Győző; Lambrev, Petar H.

    2015-01-01

    Extraction of plant light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) from the native thylakoid membrane or from aggregates by the use of surfactants brings about significant changes in the excitonic circular dichroism (CD) spectrum and fluorescence quantum yield. To elucidate the cause of these changes, e.g. trimer-trimer contacts or surfactant-induced structural perturbations, we compared the CD spectra and fluorescence kinetics of LHCII aggregates, artificial and native LHCII-lipid membranes, and LHCII solubilized in different detergents or trapped in polymer gel. By this means we were able to identify CD spectral changes specific to LHCII-LHCII interactions, at (−)-437 and (+)-484 nm, and changes specific to the interaction with the detergent n-dodecyl-β-maltoside (β-DM) or membrane lipids, at (+)-447 and (−)-494 nm. The latter change is attributed to the conformational change of the LHCII-bound carotenoid neoxanthin, by analyzing the CD spectra of neoxanthin-deficient plant thylakoid membranes. The neoxanthin-specific band at (−)-494 nm was not pronounced in LHCII in detergent-free gels or solubilized in the α isomer of DM but was present when LHCII was reconstituted in membranes composed of phosphatidylcholine or plant thylakoid lipids, indicating that the conformation of neoxanthin is sensitive to the molecular environment. Neither the aggregation-specific CD bands, nor the surfactant-specific bands were positively associated with the onset of fluorescence quenching, which could be triggered without invoking such spectral changes. Significant quenching was not active in reconstituted LHCII proteoliposomes, whereas a high degree of energetic connectivity, depending on the lipid:protein ratio, in these membranes allows for efficient light harvesting. PMID:25525277

  17. Transport and photodetection in self-assembled semiconductor quantum dots.

    PubMed

    Razeghi, M; Lim, H; Tsao, S; Szafraniec, J; Zhang, W; Mi, K; Movaghar, B

    2005-02-01

    A great step forward in science and technology was made when it was discovered that lattice mismatch can be used to grow highly ordered, artificial atom-like structures called self-assembled quantum dots. Several groups have in the meantime successfully demonstrated useful infrared photodetection devices which are based on this technology. The new physics is fascinating, and there is no doubt that many new applications will be found when we have developed a better understanding of the underlying physical processes, and in particular when we have learned how to integrate the exciting new developments made in nanoscopic addressing and molecular self-assembly methods with semiconducting dots. In this paper we examine the scientific and technical questions encountered in current state of the art infrared detector technology and suggest ways of overcoming these difficulties. Promoting simple physical pictures, we focus in particular on the problem of high temperature detector operation and discuss the origin of dark current, noise, and photoresponse. PMID:21727426

  18. DNA triangles and self-assembled hexagonal tilings.

    PubMed

    Chelyapov, Nickolas; Brun, Yuriy; Gopalkrishnan, Manoj; Reishus, Dustin; Shaw, Bilal; Adleman, Leonard

    2004-11-01

    We have designed and constructed DNA complexes in the form of triangles. We have created hexagonal planar tilings from these triangles via self-assembly. Unlike previously reported structures self-assembled from DNA, our structures appear to involve bending of double helices. Bending helices may be a useful design option in the creation of self-assembled DNA structures. It has been suggested that DNA self-assembly may lead to novel materials and efficient computational devices. PMID:15506744

  19. Self-assembling membranes and related methods thereof

    DOEpatents

    Capito, Ramille M; Azevedo, Helena S; Stupp, Samuel L

    2013-08-20

    The present invention relates to self-assembling membranes. In particular, the present invention provides self-assembling membranes configured for securing and/or delivering bioactive agents. In some embodiments, the self-assembling membranes are used in the treatment of diseases, and related methods (e.g., diagnostic methods, research methods, drug screening).

  20. Aerosolized droplet mediated self-assembly of photosynthetic pigment analogues and deposition onto substrates.

    PubMed

    Shah, Vivek B; Biswas, Pratim

    2014-02-25

    Self-assembled photosynthetic molecules have a high extinction coefficient and a broad absorption in the infrared region, and these properties can be used to improve the efficiency of solar cells. We have developed a single-step method for the self-assembly of synthetic chlorin molecules (analogues of native bacteriochlorophylls) in aerosolized droplets, containing a single solvent and two solvents, to synthesize biomimetic light-harvesting structures. In the single-solvent approach, assembly is promoted by a concentration-driven process due to evaporation of the solvent. The peak absorbance of Zn(II) 3-(1-hydroxyethyl)-10-phenyl-13(1)-oxophorbine (1) in methanol shifted from 646 nm to 725 nm (∼ 80 nm shift) after assembly, which is comparable to the shift observed in the naturally occurring assembly of bacteriochlorophyll c. Although assembly is thermodynamically favorable, the kinetics of self-assembly play an important role, and this was demonstrated by varying the initial concentration of the pigment monomer. To overcome kinetic limitations, a two-solvent approach using a volatile solvent (tetrahydrofuran) in which the dye is soluble and a less volatile solvent (ethanol) in which the dye is sparingly soluble was demonstrated to be effective. The effect of molecular structure is demonstrated by spraying the sterically hindered Zn(II) 3-(1-hydroxyethyl)-10-mesityl-13(1)-oxophorbine (2), which is an analogue of 1, under similar conditions. The results illustrate a valuable and facile aerosol-based method for the formation of films of supramolecular assemblies. PMID:24422474

  1. Dissipative self-assembly of vesicular nanoreactors.

    PubMed

    Maiti, Subhabrata; Fortunati, Ilaria; Ferrante, Camilla; Scrimin, Paolo; Prins, Leonard J

    2016-07-01

    Dissipative self-assembly is exploited by nature to control important biological functions, such as cell division, motility and signal transduction. The ability to construct synthetic supramolecular assemblies that require the continuous consumption of energy to remain in the functional state is an essential premise for the design of synthetic systems with lifelike properties. Here, we show a new strategy for the dissipative self-assembly of functional supramolecular structures with high structural complexity. It relies on the transient stabilization of vesicles through noncovalent interactions between the surfactants and adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which acts as the chemical fuel. It is shown that the lifetime of the vesicles can be regulated by controlling the hydrolysis rate of ATP. The vesicles sustain a chemical reaction but only as long as chemical fuel is present to keep the system in the out-of-equilibrium state. The lifetime of the vesicles determines the amount of reaction product produced by the system. PMID:27325101

  2. Controlling and imaging biomimetic self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aliprandi, Alessandro; Mauro, Matteo; de Cola, Luisa

    2016-01-01

    The self-assembly of chemical entities represents a very attractive way to create a large variety of ordered functional structures and complex matter. Although much effort has been devoted to the preparation of supramolecular nanostructures based on different chemical building blocks, an understanding of the mechanisms at play and the ability to monitor assembly processes and, in turn, control them are often elusive, which precludes a deep and comprehensive control of the final structures. Here the complex supramolecular landscape of a platinum(II) compound is characterized fully and controlled successfully through a combination of supramolecular and photochemical approaches. The supramolecular assemblies comprise two kinetic assemblies and their thermodynamic counterpart. The monitoring of the different emission properties of the aggregates, used as a fingerprint for each species, allows the real-time visualization of the evolving self-assemblies. The control of multiple supramolecular pathways will help the design of complex systems in and out of their thermodynamic equilibrium.

  3. Self-assembled Oniontype Multiferroic Nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Shenqiang; Briber, Robert M.; Wuttig, Manfred

    2009-03-01

    Spontaneously self-assembled oniontype multiferroic nanostructures based on block copolymers as templating materials are reported. Diblock copolymer containing two different magnetoelectric precursors separately segregated to the two microdomains have been shown to form well-ordered templated lamellar structures. Onion-type multilamellar ordered multiferroic (PZT/CoFe2O4) nanostructures have been induced by room temperature solvent annealing in a magnetic field oriented perpendicular to the plane of the film. The evolution of the onion-like microstructure has been characterized by AFM, MFM, and TEM. The structure retains lamellar periodicity observed at zero field. The onion structure is superparamagnetic above and antiferromagnetic below the blocking temperature. This templating process opens a route for nanometer-scale patterning of magnetic toroids by means of self-assembly on length scales that are difficult to obtain by standard lithography techniques.

  4. Self Assembly of Complex Building Blocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stucke, David; Crespi, Vincent

    2004-03-01

    A genetic search algorithm for optimizing the packing density of self-assembled multicomponent crystals of nanoparticles applied to complex colloidal building blocks will be presented. The algorithm searches the complex multi-dimensional space to find preferred crystal structures where standard methods fail. Mixtures of colloidal molecules and the structures found to be preferred to phase separation for different species of coloidal molecule mixtures will be shown.

  5. Templated Self Assemble of Nano-Structures

    SciTech Connect

    Suo, Zhigang

    2013-04-29

    This project will identify and model mechanisms that template the self-assembly of nanostructures. We focus on a class of systems involving a two-phase monolayer of molecules adsorbed on a solid surface. At a suitably elevated temperature, the molecules diffuse on the surface to reduce the combined free energy of mixing, phase boundary, elastic field, and electrostatic field. With no template, the phases may form a pattern of stripes or disks. The feature size is on the order of 1-100 nm, selected to compromise the phase boundary energy and the long-range elastic or electrostatic interaction. Both experimental observations and our theoretical simulations have shown that the pattern resembles a periodic lattice, but has abundant imperfections. To form a perfect periodic pattern, or a designed aperiodic pattern, one must introduce a template to guide the assembly. For example, a coarse-scale pattern, lithographically defined on the substrate, will guide the assembly of the nanoscale pattern. As another example, if the molecules on the substrate surface carry strong electric dipoles, a charged object, placed in the space above the monolayer, will guide the assembly of the molecular dipoles. In particular, the charged object can be a mask with a designed nanoscale topographic pattern. A serial process (e.g., e-beam lithography) is necessary to make the mask, but the pattern transfer to the molecules on the substrate is a parallel process. The technique is potentially a high throughput, low cost process to pattern a monolayer. The monolayer pattern itself may serve as a template to fabricate a functional structure. This project will model fundamental aspects of these processes, including thermodynamics and kinetics of self-assembly, templated self-assembly, and self-assembly on unconventional substrates. It is envisioned that the theory will not only explain the available experimental observations, but also motivate new experiments.

  6. Single photon ionisation of self assembled monolayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, B. V.; Savina, M. R.; Tripa, C. E.; Calaway, W. F.; Veryovkin, I. V.; Moore, J. F.; Pellin, M. J.

    2002-05-01

    Self assembled monolayers formed from benzenethiol, diphenylsulphide and diphenyldisulphide have been analysed using secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS), sputter neutral mass spectrometry (SNMS) and laser desorption photoionisation mass spectrometry (LDPI). The peak corresponding to the parent ion was much stronger in LDPI than with SIMS or SNMS analysis and fragmentation was lower. A useful yield of order 0.5% was obtained for LDPI from diphenyldisulphide.

  7. The dynamics of nacre self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Cartwright, Julyan H.E; Checa, Antonio G

    2006-01-01

    We show how nacre and pearl construction in bivalve and gastropod molluscs can be understood in terms of successive processes of controlled self-assembly from the molecular- to the macro-scale. This dynamics involves the physics of the formation of both solid and liquid crystals and of membranes and fluids to produce a nanostructured hierarchically constructed biological composite of polysaccharides, proteins and mineral, whose mechanical properties far surpass those of its component parts. PMID:17251136

  8. Self-assembly of Fmoc-diphenylalanine inside liquid marbles.

    PubMed

    Braun, Hans-Georg; Cardoso, André Zamith

    2012-09-01

    Liquid marbles made from Lycopodium clavatum spores are used to encapsulate aqueous solutions of 9-fluorenylmethoxycarbonyl-diphenylalanine (Fmoc-FF). Acidification of the Fmoc-FF solution at the liquid/air interface of the liquid marble triggers the self-assembly of ribbon-like peptide fibrils into an ultrathin peptide membrane (50-500 nm). The membrane incorporates the lycopodium microparticles and as a result stabilizes the liquid marble against collapse, that could otherwise occur through particle disintegration at the floating interphase. Ultrathin nanostructured peptide membrane formation at the liquid/air interface is also observed within artificial microstructured floating objects. Thus, peptide membranes formed were inspected by SEM and TEM. Electron diffraction data reveal information about the molecular organization inside the oligopeptide membranes. PMID:22584262

  9. Self-assembled tunable photonic hyper-crystals

    PubMed Central

    Smolyaninova, Vera N.; Yost, Bradley; Lahneman, David; Narimanov, Evgenii E.; Smolyaninov, Igor I.

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrate a novel artificial optical material, the “photonic hyper-crystal”, which combines the most interesting features of hyperbolic metamaterials and photonic crystals. Similar to hyperbolic metamaterials, photonic hyper-crystals exhibit broadband divergence in their photonic density of states due to the lack of usual diffraction limit on the photon wave vector. On the other hand, similar to photonic crystals, hyperbolic dispersion law of extraordinary photons is modulated by forbidden gaps near the boundaries of photonic Brillouin zones. Three dimensional self-assembly of photonic hyper-crystals has been achieved by application of external magnetic field to a cobalt nanoparticle-based ferrofluid. Unique spectral properties of photonic hyper-crystals lead to extreme sensitivity of the material to monolayer coatings of cobalt nanoparticles, which should find numerous applications in biological and chemical sensing. PMID:25027947

  10. Self-assembled tunable photonic hyper-crystals.

    PubMed

    Smolyaninova, Vera N; Yost, Bradley; Lahneman, David; Narimanov, Evgenii E; Smolyaninov, Igor I

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrate a novel artificial optical material, the "photonic hyper-crystal", which combines the most interesting features of hyperbolic metamaterials and photonic crystals. Similar to hyperbolic metamaterials, photonic hyper-crystals exhibit broadband divergence in their photonic density of states due to the lack of usual diffraction limit on the photon wave vector. On the other hand, similar to photonic crystals, hyperbolic dispersion law of extraordinary photons is modulated by forbidden gaps near the boundaries of photonic Brillouin zones. Three dimensional self-assembly of photonic hyper-crystals has been achieved by application of external magnetic field to a cobalt nanoparticle-based ferrofluid. Unique spectral properties of photonic hyper-crystals lead to extreme sensitivity of the material to monolayer coatings of cobalt nanoparticles, which should find numerous applications in biological and chemical sensing. PMID:25027947

  11. Self-assembled tunable photonic hyper-crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smolyaninov, Igor; Smolyaninova, Vera; Yost, Bradley; Lahneman, David; Gresock, Thomas; Narimanov, Evgenii

    2015-03-01

    We demonstrate a novel artificial optical material, the photonic hyper-crystal, which combines the most interesting features of hyperbolic metamaterials and photonic crystals. Similar to hyperbolic metamaterials, photonic hyper-crystals exhibit broadband divergence in their photonic density of states due to the lack of usual diffraction limit on the photon wave vector. On the other hand, similar to photonic crystals, hyperbolic dispersion law of extraordinary photons is modulated by forbidden gaps near the boundaries of photonic Brillouin zones. Three dimensional self-assembly of photonic hyper-crystals has been achieved by application of external magnetic field to a cobalt nanoparticle-based ferrofluid. Unique spectral properties of photonic hyper-crystals lead to extreme sensitivity of the material to monolayer coatings of cobalt nanoparticles, which should find numerous applications in biological and chemical sensing. This work was supported in part by NSF Grant DMR-1104676, NSF Center for Photonic and Multiscale Nanomaterials, ARO MURI and Gordon and Berry Moore Foundation.

  12. Interparticle Forces Underlying Nanoparticle Self-Assemblies.

    PubMed

    Luo, Dan; Yan, Cong; Wang, Tie

    2015-12-01

    Studies on the self-assembly of nanoparticles have been a hot topic in nanotechnology for decades and still remain relevant for the present and future due to their tunable collective properties as well as their remarkable applications to a wide range of fields. The novel properties of nanoparticle assemblies arise from their internal interactions and assemblies with the desired architecture key to constructing novel nanodevices. Therefore, a comprehensive understanding of the interparticle forces of nanoparticle self-assemblies is a pre-requisite to the design and control of the assembly processes, so as to fabricate the ideal nanomaterial and nanoproducts. Here, different categories of interparticle forces are classified and discussed according to their origins, behaviors and functions during the assembly processes, and the induced collective properties of the corresponding nanoparticle assemblies. Common interparticle forces, such as van der Waals forces, electrostatic interactions, electromagnetic dipole-dipole interactions, hydrogen bonds, solvophonic interactions, and depletion interactions are discussed in detail. In addition, new categories of assembly principles are summarized and introduced. These are termed template-mediated interactions and shape-complementary interactions. A deep understanding of the interactions inside self-assembled nanoparticles, and a broader perspective for the future synthesis and fabrication of these promising nanomaterials is provided. PMID:26436692

  13. Meniscus height controlled convective self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choudhary, Satyan; Crosby, Alfred

    Convective self-assembly techniques based on the 'coffee-ring effect' allow for the fabrication of materials with structural hierarchy and multi-functionality across a wide range of length scales. The coffee-ring effect describes deposition of non-volatiles at the edge of droplet due to capillary flow and pattern formations due to pinning and de-pinning of meniscus with the solvent evaporation. We demonstrate a novel convective self-assembly method which uses a piezo-actuated bending motion for driving the de-pinning step. In this method, a dilute solution of nanoparticles or polymers is trapped by capillary forces between a blade and substrate. As the blade oscillates with a fixed frequency and amplitude and the substrate translates at a fixed velocity, the height of the capillary meniscus oscillates. The meniscus height controls the contact angle of three phase contact line and at a critical angle de-pinning occurs. The combination of convective flux and continuously changing contact angle drives the assembly of the solute and subsequent de-pinning step, providing a direct means for producing linear assemblies. We demonstrate a new method for convective self-assembly at an accelerated rate when compared to other techniques, with control over deposit dimensions. Army Research Office (W911NF-14-1-0185).

  14. Directed Self-assembly for Lithography Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Joy

    2010-03-01

    Economics dictated that semiconductor devices need to be scaled approximately to 70 percent linearly in order to follow the pace of Moore's law and maintain cost effectiveness. Optical lithography has been the driving force for scaling; however, it approaches its physical limit to print patterns beyond 22nm node. Directed self-assembly (DSA), which combines ``bottom-up'' self-assembled polymers and ``top-down'' lithographically defined substrates, has been considered as a potential candidate to extend optical lithography. Benefit from nanometer-scale self-assembly features and the registration precision of advanced lithography, DSA provides precise and programmable nanopatterns beyond the resolution limit of conventional lithography. We have demonstrated DSA concepts including frequency multiplication and pattern rectification using guiding prepattern with proper chemical and topographical information generated by e-beam lithography. In addition, we seek to integrate DSA with 193 nm optical lithography in a straightforward manner in order to move DSA from the research stage to a viable manufacturing technology. Recently, we implemented various integration strategies using photolithography to produce guiding patterns for DSA. This new ability enables DSA to be applied to large areas with state-of-the-art lithography facilities.

  15. Symmetry, Equivalence and Self-Assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Douglas, Jack

    2006-03-01

    Molecular self-assembly at equilibrium is central to the formation of many biological structures and the emulation of this process through the creation of synthetic counterparts offers great promise for nanofabrication. The central problems in this field are an understanding of how the symmetry of the interacting particles encodes the geometrical structure of the organized structure and the nature of the thermodynamic transitions involved. Our approach is inspired by the self-assembly of actin, tubulin and icosahedral structures of plant and animal viruses. We observe chain, membrane,`nanotube' and hollow icosahedron structures using `equivalent' particles exhibiting an interplay between directional (dipolar and multi-polar) interactions and short-range (van der Waals) interactions. Specifically, a dipolar potential (continuous rotational symmetry) gives rise to chain formation, while potentials having discrete rotational symmetries (e.g., square quadrupole or triangular ring of dipoles) led to the self-organization of nanotube and icosahedral structures with some resemblance to tubulin and icosahedral viruses. The simulations are compared to theoretical models of molecular self-assembly, especially in the case of dipolar fluids where the corresponding analytic theory of equilibrium polymerization is well developed. These computations give insights into the design elements required for the development of synthetic systems exhibiting this type of organization.

  16. Self-Assembly of Nanoparticle Surfactants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lombardo, Michael T.

    Self-assembly utilizes non-covalent forces to organize smaller building blocks into larger, organized structures. Nanoparticles are one type of building block and have gained interest recently due to their unique optical and electrical properties which have proved useful in fields such as energy, catalysis, and advanced materials. There are several techniques currently used to self-assemble nanoparticles, each with its own set of benefits and drawbacks. Here, we address the limited number of techniques in non-polar solvents by introducing a method utilizing amphiphilic gold nanoparticles. Grafted polymer chains provide steric stabilization while small hydrophilic molecules induce assembly through short range attractive forces. The properties of these self-assembled structures are found to be dependent on the polymer and small molecules surface concentrations and chemistries. These particles act as nanoparticle surfactants and can effectively stabilize oil-water interfaces, such as in an emulsion. In addition to the work in organic solvent, similar amphiphilic particles in aqueous media are shown to effectively stabilize oil-in-water emulsions that show promise as photoacoustic/ultrasound theranostic agents.

  17. Self-assembled plasmonic nanohole arrays.

    PubMed

    Lee, Si Hoon; Bantz, Kyle C; Lindquist, Nathan C; Oh, Sang-Hyun; Haynes, Christy L

    2009-12-01

    We present a simple and massively parallel nanofabrication technique to produce self-assembled periodic nanohole arrays over a millimeter-sized area of metallic film, with a tunable hole shape, diameter, and periodicity. Using this method, 30 x 30 microm(2) defect-free areas of 300 nm diameter or smaller holes were obtained in silver; this area threshold is critical because it is larger than the visible wavelength propagation length of surface plasmon waves ( approximately 27 microm) in the silver film. Measured optical transmission spectra show highly homogeneous characteristics across the millimeter-size patterned area, and they are in good agreement with FDTD simulations. The simulations also reveal intense electric fields concentrated near the air/silver interface, which was used for surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS). Enhancement factors (EFs) measured with different hole shape and excitation wavelengths on the self-assembled nanohole arrays were 10(4)-10(6). With an additional Ag electroless plating step, the EF was further increased up to 3 x 10(6). The periodic nanohole arrays produced using this tunable self-assembly method show great promise as inexpensive SERS substrates as well as surface plasmon resonance biosensing platforms. PMID:19831350

  18. Engineered Self-Assembly of Plasmonic Nanomaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tao, Andrea

    2013-03-01

    A critical need in nanotechnology is the development of new tools and methods to organize, connect, and integrate solid-state nanocomponents. Self-assembly - where components spontaneously organize themselves - can be carried out on a massively parallel scale to construct large-scale architectures using solid-state nanocrystal building blocks. I will present our recent work on the synthesis and self-assembly of nanocrystals for plasmonics, where light is propagated, manipulated, and confined by solid-state components that are smaller than the wavelength of light itself. We show the organization of polymer-grafted metal nanocrystals into hierarchical nanojunction arrays that possess intense ``hot spots'' due to electromagnetic field localization. We also show that doped semiconductor nanocrystals can serve as a new class of plasmonic building blocks, where shape and carrier density can be actively tuned to engineer plasmon resonances. These examples demonstrate that nanocrystals possess unique electromagnetic properties that rival top-down structures, and the potential of self-assembly for fabricating designer plasmonic materials.

  19. Enhanced Conversion Efficiencies in Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells Achieved through Self-Assembled Platinum(II) Metallacages

    PubMed Central

    He, Zuoli; Hou, Zhiqiang; Xing, Yonglei; Liu, Xiaobin; Yin, Xingtian; Que, Meidan; Shao, Jinyou; Que, Wenxiu; Stang, Peter J.

    2016-01-01

    Two-component self-assembly supramolecular coordination complexes with particular photo-physical property, wherein unique donors are combined with a single metal acceptor, can be utilized for many applications including in photo-devices. In this communication, we described the synthesis and characterization of two-component self-assembly supramolecular coordination complexes (SCCs) bearing triazine and porphyrin faces with promising light-harvesting properties. These complexes were obtained from the self-assembly of a 90° Pt(II) acceptor with 2,4,6-tris(4-pyridyl)-1,3,5-triazine (TPyT) or 5,10,15,20-Tetra(4-pyridyl)-21H,23H-porphine (TPyP). The greatly improved conversion efficiencies of the dye-sensitized TiO2 solar cells were 6.79 and 6.08 respectively, while these SCCs were introduced into the TiO2 nanoparticle film photoanodes. In addition, the open circuit voltage (Voc) of dye-sensitized solar cells was also increased to 0.769 and 0.768 V, which could be ascribed to the inhibited interfacial charge recombination due to the addition of SCCs. PMID:27404912

  20. Enhanced Conversion Efficiencies in Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells Achieved through Self-Assembled Platinum(II) Metallacages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Zuoli; Hou, Zhiqiang; Xing, Yonglei; Liu, Xiaobin; Yin, Xingtian; Que, Meidan; Shao, Jinyou; Que, Wenxiu; Stang, Peter J.

    2016-07-01

    Two-component self-assembly supramolecular coordination complexes with particular photo-physical property, wherein unique donors are combined with a single metal acceptor, can be utilized for many applications including in photo-devices. In this communication, we described the synthesis and characterization of two-component self-assembly supramolecular coordination complexes (SCCs) bearing triazine and porphyrin faces with promising light-harvesting properties. These complexes were obtained from the self-assembly of a 90° Pt(II) acceptor with 2,4,6-tris(4-pyridyl)-1,3,5-triazine (TPyT) or 5,10,15,20-Tetra(4-pyridyl)-21H,23H-porphine (TPyP). The greatly improved conversion efficiencies of the dye-sensitized TiO2 solar cells were 6.79 and 6.08 respectively, while these SCCs were introduced into the TiO2 nanoparticle film photoanodes. In addition, the open circuit voltage (Voc) of dye-sensitized solar cells was also increased to 0.769 and 0.768 V, which could be ascribed to the inhibited interfacial charge recombination due to the addition of SCCs.

  1. Enhanced Conversion Efficiencies in Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells Achieved through Self-Assembled Platinum(II) Metallacages.

    PubMed

    He, Zuoli; Hou, Zhiqiang; Xing, Yonglei; Liu, Xiaobin; Yin, Xingtian; Que, Meidan; Shao, Jinyou; Que, Wenxiu; Stang, Peter J

    2016-01-01

    Two-component self-assembly supramolecular coordination complexes with particular photo-physical property, wherein unique donors are combined with a single metal acceptor, can be utilized for many applications including in photo-devices. In this communication, we described the synthesis and characterization of two-component self-assembly supramolecular coordination complexes (SCCs) bearing triazine and porphyrin faces with promising light-harvesting properties. These complexes were obtained from the self-assembly of a 90° Pt(II) acceptor with 2,4,6-tris(4-pyridyl)-1,3,5-triazine (TPyT) or 5,10,15,20-Tetra(4-pyridyl)-21H,23H-porphine (TPyP). The greatly improved conversion efficiencies of the dye-sensitized TiO2 solar cells were 6.79 and 6.08 respectively, while these SCCs were introduced into the TiO2 nanoparticle film photoanodes. In addition, the open circuit voltage (Voc) of dye-sensitized solar cells was also increased to 0.769 and 0.768 V, which could be ascribed to the inhibited interfacial charge recombination due to the addition of SCCs. PMID:27404912

  2. Self-assembled biomimetic nanoreactors I: Polymeric template

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McTaggart, Matt; Malardier-Jugroot, Cecile; Jugroot, Manish

    2015-09-01

    The variety of nanoarchitectures made feasible by the self-assembly of alternating copolymers opens new avenues for biomimicry. Indeed, self-assembled structures allow the development of nanoreactors which combine the efficiency of high surface area metal active centres to the effect of confinement due to the very small cavities generated by the self-assembly process. A novel self-assembly of high molecular weight alternating copolymers is characterized in the present study. The self-assembly is shown to organize into nanosheets, providing a 2 nm hydrophobic cavity with a 1D confinement.

  3. Amphiphilic, hydrophilic, or hydrophobic synthetic bacteriochlorins in biohybrid light-harvesting architectures: consideration of molecular designs.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Jianbing; Reddy, Kanumuri Ramesh; Pavan, M Phani; Lubian, Elisa; Harris, Michelle A; Jiao, Jieying; Niedzwiedzki, Dariusz M; Kirmaier, Christine; Parkes-Loach, Pamela S; Loach, Paul A; Bocian, David F; Holten, Dewey; Lindsey, Jonathan S

    2014-11-01

    Biohybrid light-harvesting architectures can be constructed that employ native-like bacterial photosynthetic antenna peptides as a scaffold to which synthetic chromophores are attached to augment overall spectral coverage. Synthetic bacteriochlorins are attractive to enhance capture of solar radiation in the photon-rich near-infrared spectral region. The effect of the polarity of the bacteriochlorin substituents on the antenna self-assembly process was explored by the preparation of a bacteriochlorin-peptide conjugate using a synthetic amphiphilic bacteriochlorin (B1) to complement prior studies using hydrophilic (B2, four carboxylic acids) or hydrophobic (B3) bacteriochlorins. The amphiphilic bioconjugatable bacteriochlorin B1 with a polar ammonium-terminated tail was synthesized by sequential Pd-mediated reactions of a 3,13-dibromo-5-methoxybacteriochlorin. Each bacteriochlorin bears a maleimido-terminated tether for attachment to a cysteine-containing analog of the Rhodobacter sphaeroides antenna β-peptide to give conjugates β-B1, β-B2, and β-B3. Given the hydrophobic nature of the β-peptide, the polarity of B1 and B2 facilitated purification of the respective conjugate compared to the hydrophobic B3. Bacteriochlorophyll a (BChl a) associates with each conjugate in aqueous micellar media to form a dyad containing two β-peptides, two covalently attached synthetic bacteriochlorins, and a datively bonded BChl-a pair, albeit to a limited extent for β-B2. The reversible assembly/disassembly of dyad (β-B2/BChl)2 was examined in aqueous detergent (octyl glucoside) solution by temperature variation (15-35 °C). The energy-transfer efficiency from the synthetic bacteriochlorin to the BChl-a dimer was found to be 0.85 for (β-B1/BChl)2, 0.40 for (β-B2/BChl)2, and 0.85 for (β-B3/BChl)2. Thus, in terms of handling, assembly and energy-transfer efficiency taken together, the amphiphilic design examined herein is more attractive than the prior hydrophilic or

  4. DNA-Based Oligochromophores as Light-Harvesting Systems.

    PubMed

    Ensslen, Philipp; Brandl, Fabian; Sezi, Sabrina; Varghese, Reji; Kutta, Roger-Jan; Dick, Bernhard; Wagenknecht, Hans-Achim

    2015-06-22

    The chromophores ethynyl pyrene as blue, ethynyl perylene as green and ethynyl Nile red as red emitter were conjugated to the 5-position of 2'-deoxyuridine via an acetylene bridge. Using phosphoramidite chemistry on solid phase labelled DNA duplexes were prepared that bear single chromophore modifications, and binary and ternary combinations of these chromophore modifications. The steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence spectra of all three chromophores were studied in these modified DNA duplexes. An energy-transfer cascade occurs from ethynyl pyrene over ethynyl perylene to ethynyl Nile red and subsequently an electron-transfer cascade in the opposite direction (from ethynyl Nile red to ethynyl perylene or ethynyl pyrene, but not from ethynyl perylene to ethynyl pyrene). The electron-transfer processes finally provide charge separation. The efficiencies by these energy and electron-transfer processes can be tuned by the distances between the chromophores and the sequences. Most importantly, excitation at any wavelength between 350 and 700 nm finally leads to charge separated states which make these DNA samples promising candidates for light-harvesting systems. PMID:26069203

  5. Microscopic quantum coherence in a photosynthetic-light-harvesting antenna.

    PubMed

    Dawlaty, Jahan M; Ishizaki, Akihito; De, Arijit K; Fleming, Graham R

    2012-08-13

    We briefly review the coherent quantum beats observed in recent two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy experiments in a photosynthetic-light-harvesting antenna. We emphasize that the decay of the quantum beats in these experiments is limited by ensemble averaging. The in vivo dynamics of energy transport depends upon the local fluctuations of a single photosynthetic complex during the energy transfer time (a few picoseconds). Recent analyses suggest that it remains possible that the quantum-coherent motion may be robust under individual realizations of the environment-induced fluctuations contrary to intuition obtained from condensed phase spectroscopic measurements and reduced density matrices. This result indicates that the decay of the observed quantum coherence can be understood as ensemble dephasing. We propose a fluorescence-detected single-molecule experiment with phase-locked excitation pulses to investigate the coherent dynamics at the level of a single molecule without hindrance by ensemble averaging. We discuss the advantages and limitations of this method. We report our initial results on bulk fluorescence-detected coherent spectroscopy of the Fenna-Mathews-Olson complex. PMID:22753820

  6. Light-harvesting processes in the dynamic photosynthetic antenna.

    PubMed

    Duffy, C D P; Valkunas, L; Ruban, A V

    2013-11-21

    We present our perspective on the theoretical basis of light-harvesting within the photosynthetic membrane. Far from being a static structure, the photosynthetic membrane is a highly dynamic system, with protein mobility playing an important role in the damage/repair cycle of photosystem II (PSII), in balancing the input of energy between PSI and PSII, and in the photoprotection of PSII in response to a sudden excess of illumination. The concept of a photosynthetic antenna is illustrated and the state transition phenomenon is discussed as an example of purposeful antenna mobility. We discuss fluorescence recovery after photo-bleaching as a technique for visualising membrane mobility, before introducing light-induced grana membrane reorganisation as an integral part of the rapid photoprotective switch in plants. We then discuss current theoretical approaches to modelling the energy transfer dynamics of the PSII antenna: the atomistic models of intra-complex transfer and the coarse-grained approach to the inter-complex dynamics. Finally we discuss the future prospect of extending these methods, beyond the static picture of the membrane, to the dynamic PSII photosynthetic antenna. PMID:23868502

  7. Excitation migration in fluctuating light-harvesting antenna systems.

    PubMed

    Chmeliov, Jevgenij; Trinkunas, Gediminas; van Amerongen, Herbert; Valkunas, Leonas

    2016-01-01

    Complex multi-exponential fluorescence decay kinetics observed in various photosynthetic systems like photosystem II (PSII) have often been explained by the reversible quenching mechanism of the charge separation taking place in the reaction center (RC) of PSII. However, this description does not account for the intrinsic dynamic disorder of the light-harvesting proteins as well as their fluctuating dislocations within the antenna, which also facilitate the repair of RCs, state transitions, and the process of non-photochemical quenching. Since dynamic fluctuations result in varying connectivity between pigment-protein complexes, they can also lead to non-exponential excitation decay kinetics. Based on this presumption, we have recently proposed a simple conceptual model describing excitation diffusion in a continuous medium and accounting for possible variations of the excitation transfer pathways. In the current work, this model is further developed and then applied to describe fluorescence kinetics originating from very diverse antenna systems, ranging from PSII of various sizes to LHCII aggregates and even the entire thylakoid membrane. In all cases, complex multi-exponential fluorescence kinetics are perfectly reproduced on the entire relevant time scale without assuming any radical pair equilibration at the side of the excitation quencher, but using just a few parameters reflecting the mean excitation energy transfer rate as well as the overall average organization of the photosynthetic antenna. PMID:25605669

  8. Electronic Energy transfer in light-harvesting antenna complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hossein-Nejad, Hoda

    The studies presented in this thesis explore electronic energy transfer (EET) in light-harvesting antenna complexes and investigate the role of quantum coherence in EET. The dynamics of energy transfer are investigated in three distinct length scales and a different formulation of the exciton transport problem is applied at each scale. These scales include: the scale of a molecular dimer, the scale of a single protein and the scale of a molecular aggregate. The antenna protein phycoerythrin 545 (PE545) isolated from the photosynthetic cryptophyte algae Rhodomonas CS4 is specifically studied in two chapters of this thesis. It is found that formation of small aggregates delocalizes the excitation across chromophores of adjacent proteins, and that this delocalization has a dramatic effect in enhancing the rate of energy transfer between pigments. Furthermore, we investigate EET from a donor to an acceptor via an intermediate site and observe that interference of coherent pathways gives a finite correction to the transfer rate that is sensitively dependent on the nature of the vibrational interactions in the system. The statistical fluctuations of a system exhibiting EET are investigated in the final chapter. The techniques of non-equilibrium statistical mechanics are applied to investigate the steady-state of a typical system exhibiting EET that is perturbed out of equilibrium due to its interaction with a fluctuating bath.

  9. Energizing the light harvesting antenna: Insight from CP29.

    PubMed

    Ioannidis, Nikolaos E; Papadatos, Sotiris; Daskalakis, Vangelis

    2016-10-01

    How do plants cope with excess light energy? Crop health and stress tolerance are governed by molecular photoprotective mechanisms. Protective exciton quenching in plants is activated by membrane energization, via unclear conformational changes in proteins called antennas. Here we show that pH and salt gradients stimulate the response of such an antenna under low and high energization by all-atom Molecular Dynamics Simulations. Novel insight establishes that helix-5 (H5) conformation in CP29 from spinach is regulated by chemiosmotic factors. This is selectively correlated with the chl-614 macrocycle deformation and interactions with nearby pigments, that could suggest a role in plant photoprotection. Adding to the significance of our findings, H5 domain is conserved among five antennas (LHCB1-5). These results suggest that light harvesting complexes of Photosystem II, one of the most abundant proteins on earth, can sense chemiosmotic gradients via their H5 domains in an upgraded role from a solar detector to also a chemiosmotic sensor. PMID:27438094

  10. Multiscale model of light harvesting by photosystem II in plants

    PubMed Central

    Amarnath, Kapil; Bennett, Doran I. G.; Schneider, Anna R.; Fleming, Graham R.

    2016-01-01

    The first step of photosynthesis in plants is the absorption of sunlight by pigments in the antenna complexes of photosystem II (PSII), followed by transfer of the nascent excitation energy to the reaction centers, where long-term storage as chemical energy is initiated. Quantum mechanical mechanisms must be invoked to explain the transport of excitation within individual antenna. However, it is unclear how these mechanisms influence transfer across assemblies of antenna and thus the photochemical yield at reaction centers in the functional thylakoid membrane. Here, we model light harvesting at the several-hundred-nanometer scale of the PSII membrane, while preserving the dominant quantum effects previously observed in individual complexes. We show that excitation moves diffusively through the antenna with a diffusion length of 50 nm until it reaches a reaction center, where charge separation serves as an energetic trap. The diffusion length is a single parameter that incorporates the enhancing effect of excited state delocalization on individual rates of energy transfer as well as the complex kinetics that arise due to energy transfer and loss by decay to the ground state. The diffusion length determines PSII’s high quantum efficiency in ideal conditions, as well as how it is altered by the membrane morphology and the closure of reaction centers. We anticipate that the model will be useful in resolving the nonphotochemical quenching mechanisms that PSII employs in conditions of high light stress. PMID:26787911

  11. Electron properties in directed self-assembly Ge/SiC/Si quantum dots

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Dongyue

    Artificially ordered semiconductor quantum dot (QD) patterns may be used to implement functionalities such as spintronic bandgap systems, quantum simulation and quantum computing, by manipulating the interaction between confined carriers via direct exchange coupling. In this dissertation, magnetotransport measurements have been conducted to investigate the electronic orbital and spin states of directed self-assembly single- and few-Ge/SiC/Si QD devices, fabricated by a directed self-assembly QD growth technique developed by our group. Diamagnetic and Zeeman energy shifts of electrons confined around the QD have been observed from the magnetotransport experiments. A triple-barrier resonant tunneling model has been proposed to describe the electron and spin transport. The strength of the Coulomb interaction between electrons confined at neighboring QDs has been observed dependent on the dot separation, and represents an important parameter for fabricating QD-based molecules and artificial arrays, which may be implemented as building blocks for future quantum simulation and quantum computing architectures.

  12. Ionically self-assembled monolayers (ISAMs)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Janik, John

    2001-04-01

    Ionically self-assembled monolayers (ISAMs), fabricated by alternate adsorption of cationic and anionic components, yield exceptionally homogeneous thin films with sub-nanometer control of the thickness and relative special location of the component materials. Using organic electrochromic materials such as polyaniline, we report studies of electrochromic responses in ISAM films. Reversible changes in the absorption spectrum are observed with the application of voltages on the order of 1.0 V. Measurements are made using both liquid electrolytes and in all-solid state devices incorporating solid polyelectrolytes such as poly(2-acylamido 2-methyl propane sulfonic acid) (PAMPS).

  13. Conceptual, self-assembling graphene nanocontainers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boothroyd, Simon; Anwar, Jamshed

    2015-07-01

    We show that graphene nano-sheets, when appropriately functionalised, can form self-assembling nanocontainers which may be opened or closed using a chemical trigger such as pH or polarity of solvent. Conceptual design rules are presented for different container structures, whose ability to form and encapsulate guest molecules is verified by molecular dynamics simulations. The structural simplicity of the graphene nanocontainers offers considerable scope for scaling the capacity, modulating the nature of the internal environment, and defining the trigger for encapsulation or release of the guest molecule(s). This design study will serve to provide additional impetus to developing synthetic approaches for selective functionalisation of graphene.

  14. Self-assembly of Random Copolymers

    PubMed Central

    Li, Longyu; Raghupathi, Kishore; Song, Cunfeng; Prasad, Priyaa; Thayumanavan, S.

    2014-01-01

    Self-assembly of random copolymers has attracted considerable attention recently. In this feature article, we highlight the use of random copolymers to prepare nanostructures with different morphologies and to prepare nanomaterials that are responsive to single or multiple stimuli. The synthesis of single-chain nanoparticles and their potential applications from random copolymers are also discussed in some detail. We aim to draw more attention to these easily accessible copolymers, which are likely to play an important role in translational polymer research. PMID:25036552

  15. Self-assembly of colloidal surfactants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kegel, Willem

    2012-02-01

    We developed colloidal dumbbells with a rough and a smooth part, based on a method reported in Ref. [1]. Specific attraction between the smooth parts occurs upon addition of non-adsorbing polymers of appropriate size. We present the first results in terms of the assemblies that emerge in these systems. [4pt] [1] D.J. Kraft, W.S. Vlug, C.M. van Kats, A. van Blaaderen, A. Imhof and W.K. Kegel, Self-assembly of colloids with liquid protrusions, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 131, 1182, (2009)

  16. Self-assembly of magnetic biofunctional nanoparticles

    SciTech Connect

    Sun Xiangcheng; Thode, C.J.; Mabry, J.K.; Harrell, J.W.; Nikles, D.E.; Sun, K.; Wang, L.M.

    2005-05-15

    Spherical, ferromagnetic FePt nanoparticles with a particle size of 3 nm were prepared by the simultaneous polyol reduction of Fe(acac){sub 3} and Pt(acac){sub 2} in phenyl ether in the presence of oleic acid and oleylamine. The oleic acid ligands can be replaced with 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid, giving particles that can be dispersed in water. Both x-ray diffraction and transmission electron microscopy indicated that FePt particles were not affected by ligands replacement. Dispersions of the FePt particles with 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid ligands and ammonium counter ions gave self-assembled films consisting of highly ordered hexagonal arrays of particles.

  17. Self-assembly of information in networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosvall, M.; Sneppen, K.

    2006-06-01

    We model self-assembly of information in networks to investigate necessary conditions for building a global perception of a system by local communication. Our approach is to let agents chat in a model system to self-organize distant communication pathways. We demonstrate that simple local rules allow agents to build a perception of the system, that is robust to dynamical changes and mistakes. We find that messages are most effectively forwarded in the presence of hubs, while transmission in hub-free networks is more robust against misinformation and failures.

  18. Self-assembling triblock proteins for biofunctional surface modification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischer, Stephen E.

    Despite the tremendous promise of cell/tissue engineering, significant challenges remain in engineering functional scaffolds to precisely regulate the complex processes of tissue growth and development. As the point of contact between the cells and the scaffold, the scaffold surface plays a major role in mediating cellular behaviors. In this dissertation, the development and utility of self-assembling, artificial protein hydrogels as biofunctional surface modifiers is described. The design of these recombinant proteins is based on a telechelic triblock motif, in which a disordered polyelectrolyte central domain containing embedded bioactive ligands is flanked by two leucine zipper domains. Under moderate conditions of temperature and pH, the leucine zipper end domains form amphiphilic alpha-helices that reversibly associate into homo-trimeric aggregates, driving hydrogel formation. Moreover, the amphiphilic nature of these helical domains enables surface adsorption to a variety of scaffold materials to form biofunctional protein coatings. The nature and stability of these coatings in various solution conditions, and their interaction with mammalian cells is the primary focus of this dissertation. In particular, triblock protein coatings functionalized with cell recognition sequences are shown to produce well-defined surfaces with precise control over ligand density. The impact of this is demonstrated in multiple cell types through ligand density-dependent cell-substrate interactions. To improve the stability of these physically self-assembled coatings, two covalent crosslinking strategies are described---one in which a zero-length chemical crosslinker (EDC) is utilized and a second in which disulfide bonds are engineered into the recombinant proteins. These targeted crosslinking approaches are shown to increase the stability of surface adsorbed protein layers with minimal effect on the presentation of many bioactive ligands. Finally, to demonstrate the versatility

  19. Surface-Cross-Linked Micelles as Multifunctionalized Organic Nanoparticles for Controlled Release, Light Harvesting, and Catalysis

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Surfactant micelles are dynamic entities with a rapid exchange of monomers. By “clicking” tripropargylammonium-containing surfactants with diazide cross-linkers, we obtained surface-cross-linked micelles (SCMs) that could be multifunctionalized for different applications. They triggered membrane fusion through tunable electrostatic interactions with lipid bilayers. Antenna chromophores could be installed on them to create artificial light-harvesting complexes with efficient energy migration among tens to hundreds of chromophores. When cleavable cross-linkers were used, the SCMs could break apart in response to redox or pH signals, ejecting entrapped contents quickly as a result of built-in electrostatic stress. They served as caged surfactants whose surface activity was turned on by environmental stimuli. They crossed cell membranes readily. Encapsulated fluorophores showed enhanced photophysical properties including improved quantum yields and greatly expanded Stokes shifts. Catalytic groups could be installed on the surface or in the interior, covalently attached or physically entrapped. As enzyme mimics, the SCMs enabled rational engineering of the microenvironment around the catalysts to afford activity and selectivity not possible with conventional catalysts. PMID:27181610

  20. Surface-Cross-Linked Micelles as Multifunctionalized Organic Nanoparticles for Controlled Release, Light Harvesting, and Catalysis.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yan

    2016-06-14

    Surfactant micelles are dynamic entities with a rapid exchange of monomers. By "clicking" tripropargylammonium-containing surfactants with diazide cross-linkers, we obtained surface-cross-linked micelles (SCMs) that could be multifunctionalized for different applications. They triggered membrane fusion through tunable electrostatic interactions with lipid bilayers. Antenna chromophores could be installed on them to create artificial light-harvesting complexes with efficient energy migration among tens to hundreds of chromophores. When cleavable cross-linkers were used, the SCMs could break apart in response to redox or pH signals, ejecting entrapped contents quickly as a result of built-in electrostatic stress. They served as caged surfactants whose surface activity was turned on by environmental stimuli. They crossed cell membranes readily. Encapsulated fluorophores showed enhanced photophysical properties including improved quantum yields and greatly expanded Stokes shifts. Catalytic groups could be installed on the surface or in the interior, covalently attached or physically entrapped. As enzyme mimics, the SCMs enabled rational engineering of the microenvironment around the catalysts to afford activity and selectivity not possible with conventional catalysts. PMID:27181610

  1. Light Harvesting Proteins for Solar Fuel Generation in Bioengineered Photoelectrochemical Cells

    PubMed Central

    Ihssen, Julian; Braun, Artur; Faccio, Greta; Gajda-Schrantz, Krisztina; Thöny-Meyer, Linda

    2014-01-01

    The sun is the primary energy source of our planet and potentially can supply all societies with more than just their basic energy needs. Demand of electric energy can be satisfied with photovoltaics, however the global demand for fuels is even higher. The direct way to produce the solar fuel hydrogen is by water splitting in photoelectrochemical (PEC) cells, an artificial mimic of photosynthesis. There is currently strong resurging interest for solar fuels produced by PEC cells, but some fundamental technological problems need to be solved to make PEC water splitting an economic, competitive alternative. One of the problems is to provide a low cost, high performing water oxidizing and oxygen evolving photoanode in an environmentally benign setting. Hematite, α-Fe2O3, satisfies many requirements for a good PEC photoanode, but its efficiency is insufficient in its pristine form. A promising strategy for enhancing photocurrent density takes advantage of photosynthetic proteins. In this paper we give an overview of how electrode surfaces in general and hematite photoanodes in particular can be functionalized with light harvesting proteins. Specifically, we demonstrate how low-cost biomaterials such as cyanobacterial phycocyanin and enzymatically produced melanin increase the overall performance of virtually no-cost metal oxide photoanodes in a PEC system. The implementation of biomaterials changes the overall nature of the photoanode assembly in a way that aggressive alkaline electrolytes such as concentrated KOH are not required anymore. Rather, a more environmentally benign and pH neutral electrolyte can be used. PMID:24678669

  2. Strong antenna-enhanced fluorescence of a single light-harvesting complex shows photon antibunching

    PubMed Central

    Wientjes, Emilie; Renger, Jan; Curto, Alberto G.; Cogdell, Richard; van Hulst, Niek F.

    2014-01-01

    The nature of the highly efficient energy transfer in photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes is a subject of intense research. Unfortunately, the low fluorescence efficiency and limited photostability hampers the study of individual light-harvesting complexes at ambient conditions. Here we demonstrate an over 500-fold fluorescence enhancement of light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2) at the single-molecule level by coupling to a gold nanoantenna. The resonant antenna produces an excitation enhancement of circa 100 times and a fluorescence lifetime shortening to ~\

  3. Triggered self-assembly of magnetic nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Ye, L; Pearson, T; Cordeau, Y; Mefford, O T; Crawford, T M

    2016-01-01

    Colloidal magnetic nanoparticles are candidates for application in biology, medicine and nanomanufacturing. Understanding how these particles interact collectively in fluids, especially how they assemble and aggregate under external magnetic fields, is critical for high quality, safe, and reliable deployment of these particles. Here, by applying magnetic forces that vary strongly over the same length scale as the colloidal stabilizing force and then varying this colloidal repulsion, we can trigger self-assembly of these nanoparticles into parallel line patterns on the surface of a disk drive medium. Localized within nanometers of the medium surface, this effect is strongly dependent on the ionic properties of the colloidal fluid but at a level too small to cause bulk colloidal aggregation. We use real-time optical diffraction to monitor the dynamics of self-assembly, detecting local colloidal changes with greatly enhanced sensitivity compared with conventional light scattering. Simulations predict the triggering but not the dynamics, especially at short measurement times. Beyond using spatially-varying magnetic forces to balance interactions and drive assembly in magnetic nanoparticles, future measurements leveraging the sensitivity of this approach could identify novel colloidal effects that impact real-world applications of these nanoparticles. PMID:26975332

  4. Triggered self-assembly of magnetic nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ye, L.; Pearson, T.; Cordeau, Y.; Mefford, O. T.; Crawford, T. M.

    2016-03-01

    Colloidal magnetic nanoparticles are candidates for application in biology, medicine and nanomanufac-turing. Understanding how these particles interact collectively in fluids, especially how they assemble and aggregate under external magnetic fields, is critical for high quality, safe, and reliable deployment of these particles. Here, by applying magnetic forces that vary strongly over the same length scale as the colloidal stabilizing force and then varying this colloidal repulsion, we can trigger self-assembly of these nanoparticles into parallel line patterns on the surface of a disk drive medium. Localized within nanometers of the medium surface, this effect is strongly dependent on the ionic properties of the colloidal fluid but at a level too small to cause bulk colloidal aggregation. We use real-time optical diffraction to monitor the dynamics of self-assembly, detecting local colloidal changes with greatly enhanced sensitivity compared with conventional light scattering. Simulations predict the triggering but not the dynamics, especially at short measurement times. Beyond using spatially-varying magnetic forces to balance interactions and drive assembly in magnetic nanoparticles, future measurements leveraging the sensitivity of this approach could identify novel colloidal effects that impact real-world applications of these nanoparticles.

  5. Self-Assembly of Gemini Surfactants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yethiraj, Arun; Mondal, Jagannath; Mahanthappa, Mahesh

    2013-03-01

    The self-assembly behavior of Gemini (dimeric or twin-tail) dicarboxylate disodium surfactants is studied using molecular dynamics simulations. This gemini architecture, in which two single tailed surfactants are joined through a flexible hydrophobic linker, has been shown to exhibit concentration-dependent aqueous self-assembly into lyotropic phases including hexagonal, gyroid, and lamellar morphologies. Our simulations reproduce the experimentally observed phases at similar amphiphile concentrations in water, including the unusual ability of these surfactants to form gyroid phases over unprecedentedly large amphiphile concentration windows. We demonstrate quanitative agreement between the predicted and experimentally observed domain spacings of these nanostructured materials. Through careful conformation analyses of the surfactant molecules, we show that the gyroid phase is electrostatically stabilized related to the lamellar phase. By starting with a lamellar phase, we show that decreasing the charge on the surfactant headgroups by carboxylate protonation or use of a bulkier tetramethyl ammonium counterion in place of sodium drives the formation of a gyroid phase.

  6. Self-assembled Nanofibrils for Immunomodulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Fan

    This thesis has been mainly focused on applying self-assembled nanofibrils as unique depots for controlled release to modulate immune system, with two major chapters on modulation of innate immunity in chapter 2 and adaptive immunity in chapter 3, respectively. There are 5 chapters in the thesis. Chapter 1 gives a detailed review on the discovery, synthesis and application of self-assembled nanofibrils of therapeutic agents (termed as "self-delivery drugs"), including bioactive molecules; Chapter 2 demonstrates the supramolecular hydrogel of chemotactic peptides as a prolonged inflammation model through proper molecular engineering; Chapter 3 reports a suppressive antibody response achieved by encapsulation of antigens by supramolecular hydrogel of glycopeptide; Chapter 4 illustrates an example of supramolecular hydrogel formation of molecules with extremely low solubility, based on the fact that many small organic drugs have poor solubility. Chapter 5 used beta-galatosidase as a model to study glycosidase-instructed supramolecular hydrogel formation, with potential to target cancer cells due to their distinct metabolic profile.

  7. Triggered self-assembly of magnetic nanoparticles

    PubMed Central

    Ye, L.; Pearson, T.; Cordeau, Y.; Mefford, O. T.; Crawford, T. M.

    2016-01-01

    Colloidal magnetic nanoparticles are candidates for application in biology, medicine and nanomanufac-turing. Understanding how these particles interact collectively in fluids, especially how they assemble and aggregate under external magnetic fields, is critical for high quality, safe, and reliable deployment of these particles. Here, by applying magnetic forces that vary strongly over the same length scale as the colloidal stabilizing force and then varying this colloidal repulsion, we can trigger self-assembly of these nanoparticles into parallel line patterns on the surface of a disk drive medium. Localized within nanometers of the medium surface, this effect is strongly dependent on the ionic properties of the colloidal fluid but at a level too small to cause bulk colloidal aggregation. We use real-time optical diffraction to monitor the dynamics of self-assembly, detecting local colloidal changes with greatly enhanced sensitivity compared with conventional light scattering. Simulations predict the triggering but not the dynamics, especially at short measurement times. Beyond using spatially-varying magnetic forces to balance interactions and drive assembly in magnetic nanoparticles, future measurements leveraging the sensitivity of this approach could identify novel colloidal effects that impact real-world applications of these nanoparticles. PMID:26975332

  8. Chiral self-assembly of helical particles.

    PubMed

    Kolli, Hima Bindu; Cinacchi, Giorgio; Ferrarini, Alberta; Giacometti, Achille

    2016-04-12

    The shape of the building blocks plays a crucial role in directing self-assembly towards desired architectures. Out of the many different shapes, the helix has a unique position. Helical structures are ubiquitous in nature and a helical shape is exhibited by the most important biopolymers like polynucleotides, polypeptides and polysaccharides as well as by cellular organelles like flagella. Helical particles can self-assemble into chiral superstructures, which may have a variety of applications, e.g. as photonic (meta)materials. However, a clear and definite understanding of these structures has not been entirely achieved yet. We have recently undertaken an extensive investigation on the phase behaviour of hard helical particles, using numerical simulations and classical density functional theory. Here we present a detailed study of the phase diagram of hard helices as a function of their morphology. This includes a variety of liquid-crystal phases, with different degrees of orientational and positional ordering. We show how, by tuning the helix parameters, it is possible to control the organization of the system. Starting from slender helices, whose phase behaviour is similar to that of rodlike particles, an increase in curliness leads to the onset of azimuthal correlations between the particles and the formation of phases specific to helices. These phases feature a new kind of screw order, of which there is experimental evidence in colloidal suspensions of helical flagella. PMID:26767786

  9. Transmetalation of self-assembled, supramolecular complexes.

    PubMed

    Carnes, Matthew E; Collins, Mary S; Johnson, Darren W

    2014-03-21

    Substituting one metal for another in inorganic and organometallic systems is a proven strategy for synthesizing complex molecules, and in some cases, provides the only route to a particular system. The multivalent nature of the coordination in metal-ligand assemblies lends itself more readily to some types of transmetalation. For instance, a binding site can open up for exchange without greatly effecting the many other interactions holding the structure together. In addition to exchanging the metal and altering the local binding environment, transmetalation in supramolecular systems can also lead to substantial changes in the nature of the secondary and tertiary structure of a larger assembly. In this tutorial review we will cover discrete supramolecular assemblies in which metals are exchanged. First we will address fully formed structures where direct substitution replaces one type of metal for another without changing the overall supramolecular assembly. We will then address systems where the disruptive exchange of one metal for another leads to a larger change in the supramolecular assembly. When possible we have tried to highlight systems that use supramolecular self-assembly in tandem with transmetalation to synthesize new structures not accessible through a more direct approach. At the end of this review, we highlight the use of transmetalation in self-assembled aqueous inorganic clusters and discuss the consequences for material science applications. PMID:24346298

  10. Self-assembled virus-membrane complexes

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Lihua; Liang, Hongjun; Angelini, Thomas; Butler, John; Coridan, Robert; Tang, Jay; Wong, Gerard

    2010-11-16

    Anionic polyelectrolytes and cationic lipid membranes can self-assemble into lamellar structures ranging from alternating layers of membranes and polyelectrolytes to 'missing layer' superlattice structures. We show that these structural differences can be understood in terms of the surface-charge-density mismatch between the polyelectrolyte and membrane components by examining complexes between cationic membranes and highly charged M13 viruses, a system that allowed us to vary the polyelectrolyte diameter independently of the charge density. Such virus-membrane complexes have pore sizes that are about ten times larger in area than DNA-membrane complexes, and can be used to package and organize large functional molecules; correlated arrays of Ru(bpy){sub 3}{sup 2+} macroionic dyes have been directly observed within the virus-membrane complexes using an electron-density reconstruction. These observations elucidate fundamental design rules for rational control of self-assembled polyelectrolyte-membrane structures, which have applications ranging from non-viral gene therapy to biomolecular templates for nanofabrication.

  11. Quantifying quality in DNA self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagenbauer, Klaus F.; Wachauf, Christian H.; Dietz, Hendrik

    2014-04-01

    Molecular self-assembly with DNA is an attractive route for building nanoscale devices. The development of sophisticated and precise objects with this technique requires detailed experimental feedback on the structure and composition of assembled objects. Here we report a sensitive assay for the quality of assembly. The method relies on measuring the content of unpaired DNA bases in self-assembled DNA objects using a fluorescent de-Bruijn probe for three-base ‘codons’, which enables a comparison with the designed content of unpaired DNA. We use the assay to measure the quality of assembly of several multilayer DNA origami objects and illustrate the use of the assay for the rational refinement of assembly protocols. Our data suggests that large and complex objects like multilayer DNA origami can be made with high strand integration quality up to 99%. Beyond DNA nanotechnology, we speculate that the ability to discriminate unpaired from paired nucleic acids in the same macromolecule may also be useful for analysing cellular nucleic acids.

  12. Directed Self-Assembly: Expectations and Achievements

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Nanotechnology has been a revolutionary thrust in recent years of development of science and technology for its broad appeal for employing a novel idea for relevant technological applications in particular and for mass-scale production and marketing as common man commodity in general. An interesting aspect of this emergent technology is that it involves scientific research community and relevant industries alike. Top–down and bottom–up approaches are two broad division of production of nanoscale materials in general. However, both the approaches have their own limits as far as large-scale production and cost involved are concerned. Therefore, novel new techniques are desired to be developed to optimize production and cost. Directed self-assembly seems to be a promising technique in this regard; which can work as a bridge between the top–down and bottom–up approaches. This article reviews how directed self-assembly as a technique has grown up and outlines its future prospects. PMID:20730077

  13. Self-Assemblies of novel molecules, VECAR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shrestha, Bijay; Kim, Hye-Young; Lee, Soojin; Novak, Brian; Moldovan, Dorel

    2015-03-01

    VECAR is a newly synthesized molecule, which is an amphiphilic antioxidant molecule that consists of two molecular groups, vitamin-E and Carnosine, linked by a hydrocarbon chain. The hydrocarbon chain is hydrophobic and both vitamin-E and Carnosine ends are hydrophilic. In the synthesis process, the length of the hydrophobic chain of VECAR molecules can vary from the shortest (n =0) to the longest (n =18), where n indicates the number of carbon atoms in the chain. We conducted MD simulation studies of self-assembly of VECAR molecules in water using GROMACS on LONI HPC resources. Our study shows that there is a strong correlation between the shape and atomistic structure of the self-assembled nano-structures (SANs) and the chain-length (n) of VECAR molecules. We will report the results of data analyses including the atomistic structure of each SANs and the dynamic and energetic mechanisms of their formation as function of time. In summary, both VECAR molecules of chain-length n =18 and 9 form worm-like micelles, which may be used as a drug delivery system. This research is supported by the Louisiana Board of Regents-RCS Grant (LEQSF(2012-15)-RD-A-19).

  14. Construction of a smart microgel glutathione peroxidase mimic based on supramolecular self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Yin, Yanzhen; Jiao, Shufei; Zhang, Ruirui; Hu, Xiaoxi; Shi, Zhongfeng; Huang, Zuqiang

    2015-07-14

    In an effort to construct smart artificial glutathione peroxidase (GPx) featuring high catalytic activity in an efficient preparation process, an artificial microgel GPx (PPAM-ADA-Te) has been prepared using a supramolecular host-guest self-assembly technique. Herein, 6,6'-telluro-bis(6-deoxy-β-cyclodextrin) (CD-Te-CD) was selected as a tellurium-containing host molecule, which also served as the crosslinker for the scaffold of the supramolecular microgel. And an adamantane-containing block copolymer (PPAM-ADA) was designed and synthesized as a guest building block copolymer. Subsequently, PPAM-ADA-Te was constructed through the self-assembly of CD-Te-CD and PPAM-ADA. The formation of this self-assembled construct was confirmed by dynamic light scattering, NMR, SEM and TEM. Notably, PPAM-ADA-Te not only exhibits a significant temperature responsive catalytic activity, but also features the characteristic saturation kinetics behaviour similar to that of a natural enzyme catalyst. We demonstrate in this paper that both the hydrophobic microenvironment and the crosslinker in this supramolecular microgel network played significant roles in enhancing and altering the temperature responsive catalytic behaviour. The successful construction of PPAM-ADA-Te not only provides a novel method for the preparation of microgel artificial GPx with high catalytic activity but also provides properties suitable for the future development of intelligent antioxidant drugs. PMID:26053236

  15. Light Harvesting and White-Light Generation in a Composite of Carbon Dots and Dye-Encapsulated BSA-Protein-Capped Gold Nanoclusters.

    PubMed

    Barman, Monoj Kumar; Paramanik, Bipattaran; Bain, Dipankar; Patra, Amitava

    2016-08-01

    Several strategies have been adopted to design an artificial light-harvesting system in which light energy is captured by peripheral chromophores and it is subsequently transferred to the core via energy transfer. A composite of carbon dots and dye-encapsulated BSA-protein-capped gold nanoclusters (AuNCs) has been developed for efficient light harvesting and white light generation. Carbon dots (C-dots) act as donor and AuNCs capped with BSA protein act as acceptor. Analysis reveals that energy transfer increases from 63 % to 83 % in presence of coumarin dye (C153), which enhances the cascade energy transfer from carbon dots to AuNCs. Bright white light emission with a quantum yield of 19 % under the 375 nm excitation wavelength is achieved by changing the ratio of components. Interesting findings reveal that the efficient energy transfer in carbon-dot-metal-cluster nanocomposites may open up new possibilities in designing artificial light harvesting systems for future applications. PMID:27383453

  16. Cascade exciton-pumping engines with manipulated speed and efficiency in light-harvesting porous π-network films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gu, Cheng; Huang, Ning; Xu, Fei; Gao, Jia; Jiang, Donglin

    2015-03-01

    Light-harvesting antennae are the machinery for exciton pumping in natural photosynthesis, whereas cascade energy transfer through chlorophyll is key to long-distance, efficient energy transduction. Numerous artificial antennae have been developed. However, they are limited in their cascade energy-transfer abilities because of a lack of control over complex chromophore aggregation processes, which has impeded their advancement. Here we report a viable approach for addressing this issue by using a light-harvesting porous polymer film in which a three-dimensional π-network serves as the antenna and micropores segregate multiple dyes to prevent aggregation. Cascade energy-transfer engines are integrated into the films; the rate and efficiency of the energy-funneling engines are precisely manipulated by tailoring the dye components and contents. The nanofilms allow accurate and versatile luminescence engineering, resulting in the production of thirty emission hues, including blue, green, red and white. This advance may open new pathways for realising photosynthesis and photoenergy conversion.

  17. Self-assembled software and method of overriding software execution

    DOEpatents

    Bouchard, Ann M.; Osbourn, Gordon C.

    2013-01-08

    A computer-implemented software self-assembled system and method for providing an external override and monitoring capability to dynamically self-assembling software containing machines that self-assemble execution sequences and data structures. The method provides an external override machine that can be introduced into a system of self-assembling machines while the machines are executing such that the functionality of the executing software can be changed or paused without stopping the code execution and modifying the existing code. Additionally, a monitoring machine can be introduced without stopping code execution that can monitor specified code execution functions by designated machines and communicate the status to an output device.

  18. IRON-INDUCED CHANGES IN LIGHT HARVESTING AND PHOTOCHEMICAL ENERGY CONVERSION IN EUKARYOTIC MARINE ALGAE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The role of iron in regulating light harvesting and photochemical energy conversion process was examined in the marine unicellular chlorophyte Dunaliella tertiolecta and the marine diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum. In both species, iron limitation led to a reduction in cellular c...

  19. Enhancing light-harvesting power with coherent vibrational interactions: A quantum heat engine picture

    SciTech Connect

    Killoran, N.; Huelga, S. F.; Plenio, M. B.

    2015-10-21

    Recent evidence suggests that quantum effects may have functional importance in biological light-harvesting systems. Along with delocalized electronic excitations, it is now suspected that quantum coherent interactions with certain near-resonant vibrations may contribute to light-harvesting performance. However, the actual quantum advantage offered by such coherent vibrational interactions has not yet been established. We investigate a quantum design principle, whereby coherent exchange of single energy quanta between electronic and vibrational degrees of freedom can enhance a light-harvesting system’s power above what is possible by thermal mechanisms alone. We present a prototype quantum heat engine which cleanly illustrates this quantum design principle and quantifies its quantum advantage using thermodynamic measures of performance. We also demonstrate the principle’s relevance in parameter regimes connected to natural light-harvesting structures.

  20. Evolution and functional properties of photosystem II light harvesting complexes in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Ballottari, Matteo; Girardon, Julien; Dall'osto, Luca; Bassi, Roberto

    2012-01-01

    Photoautotrophic organisms, the major agent of inorganic carbon fixation into biomass, convert light energy into chemical energy. The first step of photosynthesis consists of the absorption of solar energy by pigments binding protein complexes named photosystems. Within photosystems, a family of proteins called Light Harvesting Complexes (LHC), responsible for light harvesting and energy transfer to reaction centers, has evolved along with eukaryotic organisms. Besides light absorption, these proteins catalyze photoprotective reactions which allowed functioning of oxygenic photosynthetic machinery in the increasingly oxidant environment. In this work we review current knowledge of LHC proteins serving Photosystem II. Balance between light harvesting and photoprotection is critical in Photosystem II, due to the lower quantum efficiency as compared to Photosystem I. In particular, we focus on the role of each antenna complex in light harvesting, energy transfer, scavenging of reactive oxygen species, chlorophyll triplet quenching and thermal dissipation of excess energy. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Photosystem II. PMID:21704018

  1. Ion current behaviors of mesoporous zeolite-polymer composite nanochannels prepared by water-assisted self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wenjuan; Meng, Zheyi; Zhai, Jin; Heng, Liping

    2014-04-01

    Inspired by the asymmetry of biological ion channels in structure and composition, we designed a novel type of artificial asymmetric nanochannels based on mesoporous zeolite (MCM-41) and polyimide (PI) by water-assisted self-assembly. Meanwhile, we studied ionic current behaviors and rectifying characteristics of the mesoporous zeolite-polymer composite nanochannels. PMID:24394328

  2. Fabrication of bioinspired nanostructured materials via colloidal self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Wei-Han

    ultimate strains than nacre and pure GO paper (also synthesized by filtration). Specifically, it exhibits ˜30 times higher fracture energy than filtrated graphene paper and nacre, ˜100 times tougher than filtrated GO paper. Besides reinforced nanocomposites, we further explored the self-assembly of spherical colloids and the templating nanofabrication of moth-eye-inspired broadband antireflection coatings. Binary crystalline structures can be easily accomplished by spin-coating double-layer nonclose-packed colloidal crystals as templates, followed by colloidal templating. The polymer matrix between self-assembled colloidal crystal has been used as a sacrificial template to define the resulting periodic binary nanostructures, including intercalated arrays of silica spheres and polymer posts, gold nanohole arrays with binary sizes, and dimple-nipple antireflection coatings. The binary-structured antireflection coatings exhibit better antireflective properties than unitary coatings. Natural optical structures and nanocomposites teach us a great deal on how to create high performance artificial materials. The bottom-up technologies developed in this thesis are scalable and compatible with standard industrial processes, promising for manufacturing high-performance materials for the benefits of human beings.

  3. Magnetic self-assembly of small parts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shetye, Sheetal B.

    Modern society's propensity for miniaturized end-user products is compelling electronic manufacturers to assemble and package different micro-scale, multi-technology components in more efficient and cost-effective manners. As the size of the components gets smaller, issues such as part sticking and alignment precision create challenges that slow the throughput of conventional robotic pick-n-place systems. As an alternative, various self-assembly approaches have been proposed to manipulate micro to millimeter scale components in a parallel fashion without human or robotic intervention. In this dissertation, magnetic self-assembly (MSA) is demonstrated as a highly efficient, completely parallel process for assembly of millimeter scale components. MSA is achieved by integrating permanent micromagnets onto component bonding surfaces using wafer-level microfabrication processes. Embedded bonded powder methods are used for fabrication of the magnets. The magnets are then magnetized using pulse magnetization methods, and the wafers are then singulated to form individual components. When the components are randomly mixed together, self-assembly occurs when the intermagnetic forces overcome the mixing forces. Analytical and finite element methods (FEM) are used to study the force interactions between the micromagnets. The multifunctional aspects of MSA are presented through demonstration of part-to-part and part-to-substrate assembly of 1 mm x 1mm x 0.5 mm silicon components. Part-to-part assembly is demonstrated by batch assembly of free-floating parts in a liquid environment with the assembly yield of different magnetic patterns varying from 88% to 90% in 20 s. Part-to-substrate assembly is demonstrated by assembling an ordered array onto a fixed substrate in a dry environment with the assembly yield varying from 86% to 99%. In both cases, diverse magnetic shapes/patterns are used to control the alignment and angular orientation of the components. A mathematical model is

  4. Self-assembled ultra small ZnO nanocrystals for dye-sensitized solar cell application

    SciTech Connect

    Patra, Astam K.; Dutta, Arghya; Bhaumik, Asim

    2014-07-01

    We demonstrate a facile chemical approach to produce self-assembled ultra-small mesoporous zinc oxide nanocrystals using sodium salicylate (SS) as a template under hydrothermal conditions. These ZnO nanomaterials have been successfully fabricated as a photoanode for the dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC) in the presence of N719 dye and iodine–triiodide electrolyte. The structural features, crystallinity, purity, mesophase and morphology of the nanostructure ZnO are investigated by several characterization tools. N{sub 2} sorption analysis revealed high surface areas (203 m{sup 2} g{sup −1}) and narrow pore size distributions (5.1–5.4 nm) for different samples. The mesoporous structure and strong photoluminescence facilitates the high dye loading at the mesoscopic void spaces and light harvesting in DSSC. By utilizing this ultra-small ZnO photoelectrode with film thickness of about 7 μm in the DSSC with an open-circuit voltage (V{sub OC}) of 0.74 V, short-circuit current density (J{sub SC}) of 3.83 mA cm{sup −2} and an overall power conversion efficiency of 1.12% has been achieved. - Graphical abstract: Ultra-small ZnO nanocrystals have been synthesized with sodium salicylate as a template and using it as a photoanode in a dye-sensitized solar cell 1.12% power conversion efficiency has been observed. - Highlights: • Synthesis of self-assembled ultra-small mesoporous ZnO nanocrystals by using sodium salicylate as a template. • Mesoporous ZnO materials have high BET surface areas and void space. • ZnO nanoparticles serve as a photoanode for the dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC). • Using ZnO nanocrystals as photoelectrode power conversion efficiency of 1.12% has been achieved.

  5. Self-assembled magnetic surface swimmers.

    SciTech Connect

    Snezhko, A.; Belkin, M.; Aranson, I. S.; Kwok, W.-K.; Materials Science Division; Illinois Inst. of Tech.

    2009-03-20

    We report studies of novel self-assembled magnetic surface swimmers (magnetic snakes) formed from a dispersion of magnetic microparticles at a liquid-air interface and energized by an alternating magnetic field. We show that under certain conditions the snakes spontaneously break the symmetry of surface flows and turn into self-propelled objects. Parameters of the driving magnetic field tune the propulsion velocity of these snakelike swimmers. We find that the symmetry of the surface flows can also be broken in a controlled fashion by attaching a large bead to a magnetic snake (bead-snake hybrid), transforming it into a self-locomoting entity. The observed phenomena have been successfully described by a phenomenological model based on the amplitude equation for surface waves coupled to a large-scale hydrodynamic mean flow equation.

  6. Self-assembling multimeric nucleic acid constructs

    DOEpatents

    Cantor, Charles R.; Niemeyer, Christof M.; Smith, Cassandra L.; Sano, Takeshi; Hnatowich, Donald J.; Rusckowski, Mary

    1996-01-01

    The invention is directed to constructs and compositions containing multimeric forms of nucleic acid. Multimeric nucleic acids comprise single-stranded nucleic acids attached via biotin to streptavidin and bound with a functional group. These constructs can be utilized in vivo to treat or identify diseased tissue or cells. Repeated administrations of multimeric nucleic acid compositions produce a rapid and specific amplification of nucleic acid constructs and their attached functional groups. For treatment purposes, functional groups may be toxins, radioisotopes, genes or enzymes. Diagnostically, labeled multimeric constructs may be used to identify specific targets in vivo or in vitro. Multimeric nucleic acids may also be used in nanotechnology and to create self-assembling polymeric aggregates such as membranes of defined porosity, microcircuits and many other products.

  7. Self-assembling multimeric nucleic acid constructs

    DOEpatents

    Cantor, Charles R.; Niemeyer, Christof M.; Smith, Cassandra L.; Sano, Takeshi; Hnatowich, Donald J.; Rusckowski, Mary

    1999-10-12

    The invention is directed to constructs and compositions containing multimeric forms of nucleic acid. Multimeric nucleic acids comprise single-stranded nucleic acids attached via biotin to streptavidin and bound with a functional group. These constructs can be utilized in vivo to treat or identify diseased tissue or cells. Repeated administrations of multimeric nucleic acid compositions produce a rapid and specific amplification of nucleic acid constructs and their attached functional groups. For treatment purposes, functional groups may be toxins, radioisotopes, genes or enzymes. Diagnostically, labeled multimeric constructs may be used to identify specific targets in vivo or in vitro. Multimeric nucleic acids may also be used in nanotechnology and to create self-assembling polymeric aggregates such as membranes of defined porosity, microcircuits and many other products.

  8. Self-assembling multimeric nucleic acid constructs

    DOEpatents

    Cantor, C.R.; Niemeyer, C.M.; Smith, C.L.; Sano, Takeshi; Hnatowich, D.J.; Rusckowski, M.

    1996-10-01

    The invention is directed to constructs and compositions containing multimeric forms of nucleic acid. Multimeric nucleic acids comprise single-stranded nucleic acids attached via biotin to streptavidin and bound with a functional group. These constructs can be utilized in vivo to treat or identify diseased tissue or cells. Repeated administrations of multimeric nucleic acid compositions produce a rapid and specific amplification of nucleic acid constructs and their attached functional groups. For treatment purposes, functional groups may be toxins, radioisotopes, genes or enzymes. Diagnostically, labeled multimeric constructs may be used to identify specific targets in vivo or in vitro. Multimeric nucleic acids may also be used in nanotechnology and to create self-assembling polymeric aggregates such as membranes of defined porosity, microcircuits and many other products. 5 figs.

  9. Capillary self-assembly of floating bodies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jung, Sunghwan; Thompson, Paul; Bush, John

    2007-11-01

    We study the self-assembly of bodies supported on the water surface by surface tension. Attractive and repulsive capillary forces exist between menisci of, respectively, the same and opposite signs. In nature, floating objects (e.g. mosquito larvae) thus interact through capillary forces to form coherent packings on the water surface. We here present the results of an experimental investigation of such capillary pattern formation. Thin elliptical metal sheets were designed to have variable shape, flexibility and mass distribution. On the water surface, mono-, bi-, or tri-polar menisci could thus be achieved. The influence of the form of the menisci on the packings arising from the interaction of multiple floaters is explored. Biological applications are discussed.

  10. Self-assembled magnetic surface swimmers.

    PubMed

    Snezhko, A; Belkin, M; Aranson, I S; Kwok, W-K

    2009-03-20

    We report studies of novel self-assembled magnetic surface swimmers (magnetic snakes) formed from a dispersion of magnetic microparticles at a liquid-air interface and energized by an alternating magnetic field. We show that under certain conditions the snakes spontaneously break the symmetry of surface flows and turn into self-propelled objects. Parameters of the driving magnetic field tune the propulsion velocity of these snakelike swimmers. We find that the symmetry of the surface flows can also be broken in a controlled fashion by attaching a large bead to a magnetic snake (bead-snake hybrid), transforming it into a self-locomoting entity. The observed phenomena have been successfully described by a phenomenological model based on the amplitude equation for surface waves coupled to a large-scale hydrodynamic mean flow equation. PMID:19392241

  11. Pseudotannins self-assembled into antioxidant complexes.

    PubMed

    Cheng, H A; Drinnan, C T; Pleshko, N; Fisher, O Z

    2015-10-21

    Natural tannins are attractive as building blocks for biomaterials due to their antioxidant properties and ability to form interpolymer complexes (IPCs) with other macromolecules. One of the major challenges to tannin usage in biomedical applications is their instability at physiological conditions and a lack of control over the purity and reactivity. Herein, we report the synthesis and characterization of tannin-like polymers with controlled architecture, reactivity, and size. These pseudotannins were synthesized by substituting linear dextran chains with gallic, resorcylic, and protocatechuic pendant groups to mimic the structure of natural hydrolysable tannins. We demonstrate that these novel materials can self-assemble to form reductive and colloidally stable nanoscale and microscale particles. Specifically, the synthesis, turbidity, particle size, antioxidant power, and cell uptake of IPCs derived from pseudotannins and poly(ethylene glycol) was evaluated. PMID:26313262

  12. Self assembly properties of primitive organic compounds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Deamer, D. W.

    1991-01-01

    A central event in the origin of life was the self-assembly of amphiphilic, lipid-like compounds into closed microenvironments. If a primitive macromolecular replicating system could be encapsulated within a vesicular membrane, the components of the system would share the same microenvironment, and the result would be a step toward true cellular function. The goal of our research has been to determine what amphiphilic molecules might plausibly have been available on the early Earth to participate in the formation of such boundary structures. To this end, we have investigated primitive organic mixtures present in carbonaceous meteorites such as the Murchison meteorite, which contains 1-2 percent of its mass in the form of organic carbon compounds. It is likely that such compounds contributed to the inventory of organic carbon on the prebiotic earth, and were available to participate in chemical evolution leading to the emergence of the first cellular life forms. We found that Murchison components extracted into non-polar solvent systems are surface active, a clear indication of amphiphilic character. One acidic fraction self-assembles into vesicular membranes that provide permeability barriers to polar solutes. Other evidence indicates that the membranes are bimolecular layers similar to those formed by contemporary membrane lipids. We conclude that bilayer membrane formation by primitive amphiphiles on the early Earth is feasible. However, only a minor fraction of acidic amphiphiles assembles into bilayers, and the resulting membranes require narrowly defined conditions of pH and ionic composition to be stable. It seems unlikely, therefore, that meteoritic infall was a direct source of membrane amphiphiles. Instead, the hydrocarbon components and their derivatives more probably would provide an organic stock available for chemical evolution. Our current research is directed at possible reactions which would generate substantial quantities of membranogenic

  13. Self-assembled levan nanoparticles for targeted breast cancer imaging.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sun-Jung; Bae, Pan Kee; Chung, Bong Hyun

    2015-01-01

    We report on the targeted imaging of breast cancer using self-assembled levan nanoparticles. Indocyanine green (ICG) was encapsulated in levan nanoparticles via self-assembly. Levan-ICG nanoparticles were found to be successfully accumulated in breast cancer via specific interaction between fructose moieties in levan and overexpressed glucose transporter 5 in breast cancer cells. PMID:25383444

  14. Self-assembling chimeric polypeptide-doxorubicin conjugate nanoparticles that abolish tumours after a single injection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrew Mackay, J.; Chen, Mingnan; McDaniel, Jonathan R.; Liu, Wenge; Simnick, Andrew J.; Chilkoti, Ashutosh

    2009-12-01

    New strategies to self-assemble biocompatible materials into nanoscale, drug-loaded packages with improved therapeutic efficacy are needed for nanomedicine. To address this need, we developed artificial recombinant chimeric polypeptides (CPs) that spontaneously self-assemble into sub-100-nm-sized, near-monodisperse nanoparticles on conjugation of diverse hydrophobic molecules, including chemotherapeutics. These CPs consist of a biodegradable polypeptide that is attached to a short Cys-rich segment. Covalent modification of the Cys residues with a structurally diverse set of hydrophobic small molecules, including chemotherapeutics, leads to spontaneous formation of nanoparticles over a range of CP compositions and molecular weights. When used to deliver chemotherapeutics to a murine cancer model, CP nanoparticles have a fourfold higher maximum tolerated dose than free drug, and induce nearly complete tumour regression after a single dose. This simple strategy can promote co-assembly of drugs, imaging agents and targeting moieties into multifunctional nanomedicines.

  15. Trifluoromethylated Nucleic Acid Analogues Capable of Self-Assembly through Hydrophobic Interactions.

    PubMed

    Wang, RuoWen; Wang, Chunming; Cao, Yang; Zhu, Zhi; Yang, Chaoyong; Chen, Jianzhong; Qing, Feng-Ling; Tan, Weihong

    2014-10-01

    An artificial nucleic acid analogue capable of self-assembly into duplex merely through hydrophobic interactions is presented. The replacement of Watson-Crick hydrogen bonding with strictly hydrophobic interactions has the potential to confer new properties and facilitate the construction of complex DNA nanodevices. To study how the hydrophobic effect works during the self-assembly of nucleic acid bases, we have designed and synthesized a series of fluorinated nucleic acids (FNA) containing 3,5-bis(trifluoromethyl) benzene (F) and nucleic acids incorporating 3,5-dimethylbenzene (M) as hydrophobic base surrogates. Our experiments illustrate that two single-stranded nucleic acid oligomers could spontaneously organize into a duplex entirely by hydrophobic base pairing if the bases were size-complementary and the intermolecular forces were sufficiently strong. PMID:25285193

  16. Robotics. Programmable self-assembly in a thousand-robot swarm.

    PubMed

    Rubenstein, Michael; Cornejo, Alejandro; Nagpal, Radhika

    2014-08-15

    Self-assembly enables nature to build complex forms, from multicellular organisms to complex animal structures such as flocks of birds, through the interaction of vast numbers of limited and unreliable individuals. Creating this ability in engineered systems poses challenges in the design of both algorithms and physical systems that can operate at such scales. We report a system that demonstrates programmable self-assembly of complex two-dimensional shapes with a thousand-robot swarm. This was enabled by creating autonomous robots designed to operate in large groups and to cooperate through local interactions and by developing a collective algorithm for shape formation that is highly robust to the variability and error characteristic of large-scale decentralized systems. This work advances the aim of creating artificial swarms with the capabilities of natural ones. PMID:25124435

  17. Synthesis of 1D Silica Nanostructures with Controllable Sizes Based on Short Anionic Peptide Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shengjie; Cai, Qingwei; Du, Mingxuan; Xue, Junyi; Xu, Hai

    2015-09-10

    Artificial synthesis of silica under benign conditions is usually achieved by using cationic organic matrices as templates while the anionic analogues have not received enough consideration, albeit they are also functioning in biosilica formation. In this work, we report the design and self-assembly of an anionic peptide amphiphile (I3E) and the use of its self-assemblies as templates to synthesize 1D silica nanostructures with tunable sizes. We show that short I3E readily formed long nanofibrils in aqueous solution via a hierarchical self-assembly process. By using APTES and TEOS as silica precursors, we found that the I3E nanofibrils templated the production of silica nanotubes with a wide size distribution, in which the silica size regulation was achieved by tuning the interactions among the peptide template and silicon species. These results clearly illustrate a facile method for generating silica nanomaterials based on anionic matrices. PMID:26301578

  18. Plasmon-Enhanced Light Harvesting of Chlorophylls on Near-Percolating Silver Films via One-Photon Anti-Stokes Upconversion

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Ya-Lan; Nan, Fan; Liu, Xiao-Li; Zhou, Li; Peng, Xiao-Niu; Zhou, Zhang-Kai; Yu, Ying; Hao, Zhong-Hua; Wu, Yan; Zhang, Wei; Wang, Qu-Quan; Zhang, Zhenyu

    2013-01-01

    There exists a wealth of means of efficient utilization of solar energy in nature, with photosynthesis of chlorophylls as a prime example. Separately, artificially structured plasmonic materials are versatile in light harvesting and energy conversion. Using a simple and scalable design of near-percolating silver nanostructures, we demonstrate that the light-harvesting efficiency of chlorophylls can be drastically enhanced by tuning the plasmon frequency of the constituent silver nanoparticles to coincide with the maximal photon flux of sunlight. In particular, we show that the photon upconversion efficiency can be readily enhanced by over 20 folds, with the room-temperature fluorescence quantum yield increased by a factor of 2.63. The underlying mechanism for the upconversion enhancement is attributed to a one-electron-per-photon anti-Stokes process, involving absorption of a characteristic phonon mode of the chlorophylls. These findings suggest that chlorophylls can serve as molecular building blocks for high-efficiency light harvesting and solar energy conversion. PMID:23689426

  19. Bio-Photoelectrochemical Solar Cells Incorporating Reaction Center and Reaction Center Plus Light Harvesting Complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yaghoubi, Houman

    onto Au electrodes via surface exposed cysteine residues. This resulted in photocurrent densities as large as ~600 nA cm-2 while still the incident photon to generated electron quantum efficiency was as low as %3 x 10-4. 2- The second approach is to immobilize wild type RCs of Rhodobacter sphaeroides on the surface of a Au underlying electrode using self-assembled monolayers of carboxylic acid terminated oligomers and cytochrome c charge mediating layers, with a preferential orientation from the primary electron donor site. This approach resulted in EQE of up to 0.06%, which showed 200 times efficiency improvement comparing to the first approach. In the third approach, instead of isolated protein complexes, RCs plus light harvesting (LH) complexes were employed for a better photon absorption. Direct attachment of RC-LH1 complexes on Au working electrodes, resulted in 0.21% EQE which showed 3.5 times efficiency improvement over the second approach (700 times higher than the first approach). The main impact of this work is the harnessing of biological RCs for efficient energy harvesting in man-made structures. Specifically, the results in this work will advance the application of RCs in devices for energy harvesting and will enable a better understanding of bio and nanomaterial interfaces, thereby advancing the application of biological materials in electronic devices. At the end, this work offers general guidelines that can serve to improve the performance of bio-hybrid solar cells.

  20. Strongly Coupled Plasmonic Modes on Macroscopic Areas via Template-Assisted Colloidal Self-Assembly

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    We present ensembles of surface-ordered nanoparticle arrangements, which are formed by template-assisted self-assembly of monodisperse, protein-coated gold nanoparticles in wrinkle templates. Centimeter-squared areas of highly regular, linear assemblies with tunable line width are fabricated and their extinction cross sections can be characterized by conventional UV/vis/NIR spectroscopy. Modeling based on electrodynamic simulations shows a clear signature of strong plasmonic coupling with an interparticle spacing of 1–2 nm. We find evidence for well-defined plasmonic modes of quasi-infinite chains, such as resonance splitting and multiple radiant modes. Beyond elementary simulations on the individual chain level, we introduce an advanced model, which considers the chain length distribution as well as disorder. The step toward macroscopic sample areas not only opens perspectives for a range of applications in sensing, plasmonic light harvesting, surface enhanced spectroscopy, and information technology but also eases the investigation of hybridization and metamaterial effects fundamentally. PMID:25347293

  1. Controlling decay dynamics of quantum emitters with Plsmonic self assembly templates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Indukuri, S. R. K. Chaitanya; Basu, J. K.

    2015-03-01

    Controlling the emission of quantum dots by tailoring local density of states(LDOS) in self assembled plasmonic template. Using very small diameter gold (Au) spherical nanoantenna within a polymer tem plate randomly dispersed with quantum dots, we show how the photoluminescence intensity and lifetime anisotropy of these dots can be significantly enhanced through LDOS tuning. We also studied the effect of dispersion, wider range of geometric and spectral parameters bringing out the versatility of these functional plasmonic templates. We studied the effect of nano antenna distribution on radiative and non radiative decay rates in the templates. We demonstrated that the decay dynamics in the plasmonic templates can be controlled in a facile manner by changing the filling fraction of the Au nanoparticles. This polarization dependent anisotropic decay dynamics for the quantum emitters is determined by polarization dependent LDOS of the plasmonic templates as demonstrated by FDTD simulations. Our work provides a new method to achieve spontaneous emission intensity and anisotropy enhancement with nanoscale plasmon resonators for applications from controlled photon emitters to light harvesting. DST, India Nanomission.

  2. Photoelectron transport tuning of self-assembled subbands.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Zhengwei; Wang, Xinmin; Wu, Weidong; Wang, Xuemin; Peng, Liping; Zhao, Yan; Yan, Dawei; Jiang, Tao; Shen, Changle; Zhan, Zhiqiang; Cao, Linhong; Li, Weihua

    2016-02-18

    Conventionally, electrical transport of quantum subbands occurs at very high electric fields, indicating that the medium is easy to break down. In the experiments and practical applications, the extreme condition is difficult to satisfy. For quantum information transmission, low power consumption and convenient implementation are what we expect. In this paper, we engineered a special quantum dot array (QDA) embedded in a single crystal matrix. By external optical field excitation, we found a series of subbands made of the self-assembled QDA discretely located in the matrix. Changing the spacing between the quantum dots leads to the variation of subband spacing. Artificially manipulating the microcosmic QDA system can bring interesting macroscopic effects, such as an enhanced absorption intensity in the ultraviolet range, a blue-shift of the surface plasmon resonance peak and nonlinear absorption changed from two-photon absorption to saturated absorption. The intrinsic mechanism of the subband optical response was revealed due to the strong quantum confinement effect and dominant intraband transitions. The weak surface plasmon resonance absorption of Ni QDA gave an excellent figure of merit of the order of 10(-10). The composite films are expectation enough to become a prime candidate for nonlinear applications near 532 nm. Therefore with interplay of the weak optical field and subbands, we achieved a tunable photoelectron transport process. PMID:26853784

  3. Designed self-assembly of molecular necklaces.

    PubMed

    Park, Ki-Min; Kim, Soo-Young; Heo, Jungseok; Whang, Dongmok; Sakamoto, Shigeru; Yamaguchi, Kentaro; Kim, Kimoon

    2002-03-13

    This paper reports an efficient strategy to synthesize molecular necklaces, in which a number of small rings are threaded onto a large ring, utilizing the principles of self-assembly and coordination chemistry. Our strategy involves (1) threading a molecular "bead" with a short "string" to make a pseudorotaxane and then (2) linking the pseudorotaxanes with a metal complex with two cis labile ligands acting as an "angle connector" to form a cyclic product (molecular necklace). A 4- or 3-pyridylmethyl group is attached to each end of 1,4-diaminobutane or 1,5-diaminopentane to produce the short "strings" (C4N4(2+), C4N3(2+), C5N4(2+), and C5N3(2+)), which then react with a cucurbituril (CB) "bead" to form stable pseudorotaxanes (PR44(2+), PR43(2+), PR54(2+), and PR53(2+), respectively). The reaction of the pseudorotaxanes with Pt(en)(NO(3))(2) (en = ethylenediamine) produces a molecular necklace [4]MN, in which three molecular "beads" are threaded on a triangular framework, and/or a molecular necklace [5]MN, in which four molecular "beads" are threaded on a square framework. Under refluxing conditions, the reaction with PR44(2+) or PR54(2+) yields exclusively [4]MN (MN44T or MN54T, respectively), whereas that with PR43(2+) or PR53(2+) produces exclusively [5]MN (MN43S or MN53S, respectively). The products have been characterized by various methods including X-ray crystallography. At lower temperatures, on the other hand, the reaction with PR44(2+) or PR54(2+) affords both [4]MN and [5]MN. The supermolecules reported here are the first series of molecular necklaces obtained as thermodynamic products. The overall structures of the molecular necklaces are strongly influenced by the structures of pseudorotaxane building blocks, which is discussed in detail on the basis of the X-ray crystal structures. The temperature dependence of the product distribution observed in this self-assembly process is also discussed. PMID:11878967

  4. Solvent mediated self-assembly of solids

    SciTech Connect

    De Yoreo, J.; Wilson, W.D.; Palmore, T.

    1997-12-12

    Solvent-mediated crystallization represents a robust approach to self-assembly of nanostructures and microstructures. In organic systems, the relative ease with which the structure of hydrogen- bonded molecules can be manipulated allows for generation of a wide variety of nanoscale crystal structures. In living organisms, control over the micron-to-millimeter form of inorganic crystals is achieved through introduction of bio-organic molecules. The purpose of this proposal is to understand the interplay between solution chemistry, molecular structure, surface chemistry, and the processes of nucleation and crystal growth in solvent-mediated systems, with the goal of developing the atomic and molecular basis of a solvent-mediated self-assembly technology. We will achieve this purpose by: (1) utilizing an atomic force microscopy (AFM) approach that provides in situ, real time imaging during growth from solutions, (2) by modifying kinetic Monte Carlo (KMC) models to include solution-surface kinetics, (3) by introducing quantum chemistry (QC) calculations of the potentials of the relevant chemical species and the near-surface structure of the solution, and (4) by utilizing molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to identify the minimum energy pathways to the solid state. Our work will focus on two systems chosen to address both the manometer and micron-to-millimeter length scales of assembly, the family of 2,5- diketopiperazines (X-DKPs) and the system of CaCO{sub 3} with amino acids. Using AFM, we will record the evolution of surface morphology, critical lengths, step speeds, and step-step interactions as a function of supersaturation and temperature. In the case of the X-DKPs, these measurements will be repeated as the molecular structure of the growth unit is varied. In the case of CaCO{sub 3}, they will be performed as a function of solution chemistry including pH, ionic strength, and amino acid content. In addition, we will measure nucleation rates and orientations of

  5. Insight into the Structure of Light Harvesting Complex II and its Stabilization in Detergent Solution

    SciTech Connect

    Cardoso, Mateus B; Smolensky, Dmitriy; Heller, William T; O'Neill, Hugh Michael

    2009-01-01

    The structure of spinach light-harvesting complex II (LHC II), stabilized in a solution of the detergent n-octyl-{beta}-d-glucoside (BOG), was investigated by small-angle neutron scattering (SANS). Physicochemical characterization of the isolated complex indicated that it was pure (>95%) and also in its native trimeric state. SANS with contrast variation was used to investigate the properties of the protein-detergent complex at three different H{sub 2}O/D{sub 2}O contrast match points, enabling the scattering properties of the protein and detergent to be investigated independently. The topological shape of LHC II, determined using ab initio shape restoration methods from the SANS data at the contrast match point of BOG, was consistent with the X-ray crystallographic structure of LHC II (Liu et al. Nature 2004 428, 287-292). The interactions of the protein and detergent were investigated at the contrast match point for the protein and also in 100% D{sub 2}O. The data suggested that BOG micelle structure was altered by its interaction with LHC II, but large aggregate structures were not formed. Indirect Fourier transform analysis of the LHC II/BOG scattering curves showed that the increase in the maximum dimension of the protein-detergent complex was consistent with the presence of a monolayer of detergent surrounding the protein. A model of the LHC II/BOG complex was generated to interpret the measurements made in 100% D{sub 2}O. This model adequately reproduced the overall size of the LHC II/BOG complex, but demonstrated that the detergent does not have a highly regular shape that surrounds the hydrophobic periphery of LHC II. In addition to demonstrating that natively structured LHC II can be produced for functional characterization and for use in artificial solar energy applications, the analysis and modeling approaches described here can be used for characterizing detergent-associated {alpha}-helical transmembrane proteins.

  6. Self-assembly and interactions of biomimetic thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Handa, Hitesh

    Bilayer lipid membranes create the natural environment for the immobilization of functional proteins and have been used as a model for understanding structure and properties of cell membranes. The development of biomimetic surfaces requires in depth knowledge of surface science, self-assembly, immobilization techniques, nanofabrication, biomolecular interactions and analytical techniques. This research is focused on synthesizing and characterizing biomimetic artificial surfaces for fundamental studies in membrane structure and better understanding of specific and non-specific interactions. The other main focus is on surface engineering of self-assembled, nanostructured interfaces that mimic cell membranes. These structures provide a powerful bottom-up approach to the studies of the structure and functionality of cell membranes and their interactions with other molecules. One of the advantages of this approach is that the complexity of the system can be controlled and gradually increased to add functionalities. This dissertation provides a first single molecule force measurement of the specific interactions between Salmonella typhimurium and P22 bacteriophage. This dissertation also provides a novel model system for the confined crystallization of drug molecules such as aspirin using the concept of phospholipid bilayer assembly at surfaces. The results will impact the development of biosensors and drug delivery. The defense will focus on the preparation and bio-recognition interactions between a monolayer of bacteriophage P22, covalently bound to glass substrates through a bifunctional cross linker 3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane, and the outer membrane of Salmonella, lipopolysaccharides (LPS). The LPS bilayer was deposited on poly (ethylenimine)-modified mica from their sonicated unilamellar vesicle solution. The specific binding of Salmonella typhimurium to the phage monolayer was studied by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and atomic force microscopy (AFM

  7. Self-assembled single-crystal silicon circuits on plastic

    PubMed Central

    Stauth, Sean A.; Parviz, Babak A.

    2006-01-01

    We demonstrate the use of self-assembly for the integration of freestanding micrometer-scale components, including single-crystal, silicon field-effect transistors (FETs) and diffusion resistors, onto flexible plastic substrates. Preferential self-assembly of multiple microcomponent types onto a common platform is achieved through complementary shape recognition and aided by capillary, fluidic, and gravitational forces. We outline a microfabrication process that yields single-crystal, silicon FETs in a freestanding, powder-like collection for use with self-assembly. Demonstrations of self-assembled FETs on plastic include logic inverters and measured electron mobility of 592 cm2/V-s. Finally, we extend the self-assembly process to substrates each containing 10,000 binding sites and realize 97% self-assembly yield within 25 min for 100-μm-sized elements. High-yield self-assembly of micrometer-scale functional devices as outlined here provides a powerful approach for production of macroelectronic systems. PMID:16968780

  8. Functional Self-Assembled Nanofibers by Electrospinning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greiner, A.; Wendorff, J. H.

    Electrospinning constitutes a unique technique for the production of nanofibers with diameters down to the range of a few nanometers. In strong contrast to conventional fiber producing techniques, it relies on self-assembly processes driven by the Coulomb interactions between charged elements of the fluids to be spun to nanofibers. The transition from a macroscopic fluid object such as a droplet emerging from a die to solid nanofibers is controlled by a set of complex physical instability processes. They give rise to extremely high extensional deformations and strain rates during fiber formation causing among others a high orientational order in the nanofibers as well as enhanced mechanical properties. Electrospinning is predominantly applied to polymer based materials including natural and synthetic polymers, but, more recently, its use has been extended towards the production of metal, ceramic and glass nanofibers exploiting precursor routes. The nanofibers can be functionalized during electrospinning by introducing pores, fractal surfaces, by incorporating functional elements such as catalysts, quantum dots, drugs, enzymes or even bacteria. The production of individual fibers, random nonwovens, or orientationally highly ordered nonwovens is achieved by an appropriate selection of electrode configurations. Broad areas of application exist in Material and Life Sciences for such nanofibers, including not only optoelectronics, sensorics, catalysis, textiles, high efficiency filters, fiber reinforcement but also tissue engineering, drug delivery, and wound healing. The basic electrospinning process has more recently been extended towards compound co-electrospinning and precision deposition electrospinning to further broaden accessible fiber architectures and potential areas of application.

  9. Self-assembled biomimetic superhydrophobic hierarchical arrays.

    PubMed

    Yang, Hongta; Dou, Xuan; Fang, Yin; Jiang, Peng

    2013-09-01

    Here, we report a simple and inexpensive bottom-up technology for fabricating superhydrophobic coatings with hierarchical micro-/nano-structures, which are inspired by the binary periodic structure found on the superhydrophobic compound eyes of some insects (e.g., mosquitoes and moths). Binary colloidal arrays consisting of exemplary large (4 and 30 μm) and small (300 nm) silica spheres are first assembled by a scalable Langmuir-Blodgett (LB) technology in a layer-by-layer manner. After surface modification with fluorosilanes, the self-assembled hierarchical particle arrays become superhydrophobic with an apparent water contact angle (CA) larger than 150°. The throughput of the resulting superhydrophobic coatings with hierarchical structures can be significantly improved by templating the binary periodic structures of the LB-assembled colloidal arrays into UV-curable fluoropolymers by a soft lithography approach. Superhydrophobic perfluoroether acrylate hierarchical arrays with large CAs and small CA hysteresis can be faithfully replicated onto various substrates. Both experiments and theoretical calculations based on the Cassie's dewetting model demonstrate the importance of the hierarchical structure in achieving the final superhydrophobic surface states. PMID:23786830

  10. Initial condition of stochastic self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Jason K.; Sindi, Suzanne S.

    2016-02-01

    The formation of a stable protein aggregate is regarded as the rate limiting step in the establishment of prion diseases. In these systems, once aggregates reach a critical size the growth process accelerates and thus the waiting time until the appearance of the first critically sized aggregate is a key determinant of disease onset. In addition to prion diseases, aggregation and nucleation is a central step of many physical, chemical, and biological process. Previous studies have examined the first-arrival time at a critical nucleus size during homogeneous self-assembly under the assumption that at time t =0 the system was in the all-monomer state. However, in order to compare to in vivo biological experiments where protein constituents inherited by a newly born cell likely contain intermediate aggregates, other possibilities must be considered. We consider one such possibility by conditioning the unique ergodic size distribution on subcritical aggregate sizes; this least-informed distribution is then used as an initial condition. We make the claim that this initial condition carries fewer assumptions than an all-monomer one and verify that it can yield significantly different averaged waiting times relative to the all-monomer condition under various models of assembly.

  11. Self-assembling holographic biosensors and biocomputers.

    SciTech Connect

    Light, Yooli Kim; Bachand, George David (Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM); Schoeniger, Joseph S.; Trent, Amanda M. (Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM)

    2006-05-01

    We present concepts for self-assembly of diffractive optics with potential uses in biosensors and biocomputers. The simplest such optics, diffraction gratings, can potentially be made from chemically-stabilized microtubules migrating on nanopatterned tracks of the motor protein kinesin. We discuss the fabrication challenges involved in patterning sub-micron-scale structures with proteins that must be maintained in aqueous buffers to preserve their activity. A novel strategy is presented that employs dry contact printing onto glass-supported amino-silane monolayers of heterobifunctional crosslinkers, followed by solid-state reactions of these cross-linkers, to graft patterns of reactive groups onto the surface. Successive solution-phase addition of cysteine-mutant proteins and amine-reactive polyethylene glycol allows assembly of features onto the printed patterns. We present data from initial experiments showing successful micro- and nanopatterning of lines of single-cysteine mutants of kinesin interleaved with lines of polyethylene, indicating that this strategy can be employed to arrays of features with resolutions suitable for gratings.

  12. Restricted meniscus convective self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Chen, Kai; Stoianov, Stefan V; Bangerter, Justin; Robinson, Hans D

    2010-04-15

    Convective (or evaporation-induced) self-assembly is a standard technique for depositing uniform, poly-crystalline coatings of nanospheres across multiple square centimeters on the timescale of minutes. In this paper, we present a variation of this technique, where the drying meniscus is restricted by a straight-edge located approximately 100 microm above the substrate adjacent to the drying zone. Surprisingly, we find this technique to yield films at roughly twice the growth rate compared to the standard technique. We attribute this to differing rates of diffusion of vapor from the drying crystal in the two cases. We also investigate the crystal growth rate dependence on ambient relative humidity and find, contrary to some previous reports, that the growth rate depends strongly on the humidity. We introduce a model which indicates that while the length of the drying zone may increase with humidity, this alone cannot compensate for the simultaneous reduction in evaporation rate, so a lower humidity must always lead to a higher growth speed. Comparing the model to our experimental results, we find that the length of the drying zone is constant and mostly independent of parameters such as humidity and surface tension. PMID:20132947

  13. Dissipative adaptation in driven self-assembly.

    PubMed

    England, Jeremy L

    2015-11-01

    In a collection of assembling particles that is allowed to reach thermal equilibrium, the energy of a given microscopic arrangement and the probability of observing the system in that arrangement obey a simple exponential relationship known as the Boltzmann distribution. Once the same thermally fluctuating particles are driven away from equilibrium by forces that do work on the system over time, however, it becomes significantly more challenging to relate the likelihood of a given outcome to familiar thermodynamic quantities. Nonetheless, it has long been appreciated that developing a sound and general understanding of the thermodynamics of such non-equilibrium scenarios could ultimately enable us to control and imitate the marvellous successes that living things achieve in driven self-assembly. Here, I suggest that such a theoretical understanding may at last be emerging, and trace its development from historic first steps to more recent discoveries. Focusing on these newer results, I propose that they imply a general thermodynamic mechanism for self-organization via dissipation of absorbed work that may be applicable in a broad class of driven many-body systems. PMID:26530021

  14. Polymer blends for directed self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Namie, Yuuji; Anno, Yusuke; Naruoka, Takehiko; Minegishi, Shinya; Nagai, Tomoki; Hishiro, Yoshi; Yamaguchi, Yoshikazu

    2013-03-01

    The advantage of blend DSA (Directed Self Assembly) is milder anneal condition than PS-b-PMMA BCP DSA materials and availability of conventional instruments. In this paper, blend type DSA was applied for hole patterning. Target patterns were contact hole and oval hole. Polymer phase separation behavior has been studied from the point of χN. In the case of polymer blend, χN needs to be more than 2 to give phase separation. At first the effect of polymer size was studied. When the polymer weight was low, the shrunk hole was not clean because of low χN. Furthermore, the correlation of shrink amount and χN was studied. Higher χN polymer blend system gave higher shrink amount. High χN polymer systems give clear interface, then the intermixing area would be reduced, then the attached polymer blend part became larger. The polymer blend ratio effect was also investigated. The blend ratio was varied for polymer A/ polymer B=70/30-50/50. The shrink amount of oval hole was reduced with increasing the ratio of polymer B. However, the shrink amount ratio of CDY/CDX was almost constant (~3).

  15. Surfactant mediated polyelectrolyte self-assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Goswami, Monojoy; Borreguero Calvo, Jose M.; Pincus, Phillip A.; Sumpter, Bobby G.

    2015-11-25

    Self-assembly and dynamics of polyelectrolyte (PE) surfactant complex (PES) is investigated using molecular dynamics simulations. The complexation is systematically studied for five different PE backbone charge densities. At a fixed surfactant concentration the PES complexation exhibits pearl-necklace to agglomerated double spherical structures with a PE chain decorating the surfactant micelles. The counterions do not condense on the complex, but are released in the medium with a random distribution. The relaxation dynamics for three different length scales, polymer chain, segmental and monomer, show distinct features of the charge and neutral species; the counterions are fastest followed by the PE chain and surfactants. The surfactant heads and tails have the slowest relaxation due to their restricted movement inside the agglomerated structure. At the shortest length scale, all the charge and neutral species show similar relaxation dynamics confirming Rouse behavior at monomer length scales. Overall, the present study highlights the structure-property relationship for polymer-surfactant complexation. These results will help improve the understanding of PES complex and should aid in the design of better materials for future applications.

  16. Surfactant mediated polyelectrolyte self-assembly

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Goswami, Monojoy; Borreguero Calvo, Jose M.; Pincus, Phillip A.; Sumpter, Bobby G.

    2015-11-25

    Self-assembly and dynamics of polyelectrolyte (PE) surfactant complex (PES) is investigated using molecular dynamics simulations. The complexation is systematically studied for five different PE backbone charge densities. At a fixed surfactant concentration the PES complexation exhibits pearl-necklace to agglomerated double spherical structures with a PE chain decorating the surfactant micelles. The counterions do not condense on the complex, but are released in the medium with a random distribution. The relaxation dynamics for three different length scales, polymer chain, segmental and monomer, show distinct features of the charge and neutral species; the counterions are fastest followed by the PE chain andmore » surfactants. The surfactant heads and tails have the slowest relaxation due to their restricted movement inside the agglomerated structure. At the shortest length scale, all the charge and neutral species show similar relaxation dynamics confirming Rouse behavior at monomer length scales. Overall, the present study highlights the structure-property relationship for polymer-surfactant complexation. These results will help improve the understanding of PES complex and should aid in the design of better materials for future applications.« less

  17. Self-Assembled Epitaxical Nanostructure Arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Madhukar, Anupam

    2003-03-01

    The past decade has witnessed major strides in the realization of nanostructures with 3-dimensionally confined electronic states, dubbed quantum dots (QDs). Most notable classes are the solution grown colloidal nanocrystals, also called nanoparticles (NPs) and the strain-driven semiconductor epitaxical islands formed spontaneously beyond a critical deposition amount during growth of a film with a high lattice mismatch with the substrate. The latter, though spatially randomly positioned, by virtue of their epitaxical nature, are readily integrable in a variety of test and device structures. Consequently these have led the way in providing platforms for examining QD physics and QD based devices such as lasers, detectors, amplifiers, and transistors. The colloidal nanocrystals are in desperate need of being epitaxically integrated onto appropriate substrates and thus providing the platform for realizing more flexible and varied classes of quantum nanostructures for even wider range of applications. Epitaxy and spatially-selective self-assembly are thus two key features of wide classes of nanostructures essential for future advanced information sensing, processing, communication and computing technologies within the largely current paradigms of chip and system architectures. In this talk I will focus on some fundamental issues of epitaxical growth and ordering, structural and chemical template engineering approaches, and their implementation for realization of epitaxical QDs in regular 2D and 3D ultra-dense arrays.

  18. Self-assembly of smallest magnetic particles

    PubMed Central

    Mehdizadeh Taheri, Sara; Michaelis, Maria; Friedrich, Thomas; Förster, Beate; Drechsler, Markus; Römer, Florian M.; Bösecke, Peter; Narayanan, Theyencheri; Weber, Birgit; Rehberg, Ingo; Rosenfeldt, Sabine; Förster, Stephan

    2015-01-01

    The assembly of tiny magnetic particles in external magnetic fields is important for many applications ranging from data storage to medical technologies. The development of ever smaller magnetic structures is restricted by a size limit, where the particles are just barely magnetic. For such particles we report the discovery of a kind of solution assembly hitherto unobserved, to our knowledge. The fact that the assembly occurs in solution is very relevant for applications, where magnetic nanoparticles are either solution-processed or are used in liquid biological environments. Induced by an external magnetic field, nanocubes spontaneously assemble into 1D chains, 2D monolayer sheets, and large 3D cuboids with almost perfect internal ordering. The self-assembly of the nanocubes can be elucidated considering the dipole–dipole interaction of small superparamagnetic particles. Complex 3D geometrical arrangements of the nanodipoles are obtained under the assumption that the orientation of magnetization is freely adjustable within the superlattice and tends to minimize the binding energy. On that basis the magnetic moment of the cuboids can be explained. PMID:26554000

  19. Self-Assembly of Tetraphenylalanine Peptides.

    PubMed

    Mayans, Enric; Ballano, Gema; Casanovas, Jordi; Díaz, Angélica; Pérez-Madrigal, Maria M; Estrany, Francesc; Puiggalí, Jordi; Cativiela, Carlos; Alemán, Carlos

    2015-11-16

    Three different tetraphenylalanine (FFFF) based peptides that differ at the N- and C-termini have been synthesized by using standard procedures to study their ability to form different nanoassemblies under a variety of conditions. The FFFF peptide assembles into nanotubes that show more structural imperfections at the surface than those formed by the diphenylalanine (FF) peptide under the same conditions. Periodic DFT calculations (M06L functional) were used to propose a model that consists of three FFFF molecules defining a ring through head-to-tail NH3(+)⋅⋅⋅(-)OOC interactions, which in turn stack to produce deformed channels with internal diameters between 12 and 16 Å. Depending on the experimental conditions used for the peptide incubation, N-fluorenylmethoxycarbonyl (Fmoc) protected FFFF self-assembles into a variety of polymorphs: ultra-thin nanoplates, fibrils, and star-like submicrometric aggregates. DFT calculations indicate that Fmoc-FFFF prefers a parallel rather than an antiparallel β-sheet assembly. Finally, coexisting multiple assemblies (up to three) were observed for Fmoc-FFFF-OBzl (OBzl = benzyl ester), which incorporates aromatic protecting groups at the two peptide terminals. This unusual and noticeable feature is attributed to the fact that the assemblies obtained by combining the Fmoc and OBzl groups contained in the peptide are isoenergetic. PMID:26419936

  20. Dissipative adaptation in driven self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    England, Jeremy L.

    2015-11-01

    In a collection of assembling particles that is allowed to reach thermal equilibrium, the energy of a given microscopic arrangement and the probability of observing the system in that arrangement obey a simple exponential relationship known as the Boltzmann distribution. Once the same thermally fluctuating particles are driven away from equilibrium by forces that do work on the system over time, however, it becomes significantly more challenging to relate the likelihood of a given outcome to familiar thermodynamic quantities. Nonetheless, it has long been appreciated that developing a sound and general understanding of the thermodynamics of such non-equilibrium scenarios could ultimately enable us to control and imitate the marvellous successes that living things achieve in driven self-assembly. Here, I suggest that such a theoretical understanding may at last be emerging, and trace its development from historic first steps to more recent discoveries. Focusing on these newer results, I propose that they imply a general thermodynamic mechanism for self-organization via dissipation of absorbed work that may be applicable in a broad class of driven many-body systems.

  1. Initial condition of stochastic self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Davis, Jason K; Sindi, Suzanne S

    2016-02-01

    The formation of a stable protein aggregate is regarded as the rate limiting step in the establishment of prion diseases. In these systems, once aggregates reach a critical size the growth process accelerates and thus the waiting time until the appearance of the first critically sized aggregate is a key determinant of disease onset. In addition to prion diseases, aggregation and nucleation is a central step of many physical, chemical, and biological process. Previous studies have examined the first-arrival time at a critical nucleus size during homogeneous self-assembly under the assumption that at time t=0 the system was in the all-monomer state. However, in order to compare to in vivo biological experiments where protein constituents inherited by a newly born cell likely contain intermediate aggregates, other possibilities must be considered. We consider one such possibility by conditioning the unique ergodic size distribution on subcritical aggregate sizes; this least-informed distribution is then used as an initial condition. We make the claim that this initial condition carries fewer assumptions than an all-monomer one and verify that it can yield significantly different averaged waiting times relative to the all-monomer condition under various models of assembly. PMID:26986290

  2. Self-assembled supramolecular channels: toward biomimetic materials for directional translocation.

    PubMed

    Legrand, Yves-Marie; Barboiu, Mihail

    2013-12-01

    This Personal Account summarizes the recent developments in the development of self-assembled supramolecular channels and their dimensional extension towards up-scaled self-organized materials. This Personal Account begins with a short, non-exhaustive description of artificial supramolecular channel systems that are involved in water-, proton-, and ion-transport processes through bilayer membranes. Then, these "all-made" artificial systems will be described as a source of inspiration, by presenting several breakthroughs over the last few years in the field of biomimetic supramolecular channel systems. Their inclusion in artificial polymeric/hybrid matrixes, which results in the formation of biomimetic artificial materials for directional translocation through channeling pathways, will be described in the last part of the Personal Account, with an emphasis on all of the efforts that are necessary to maintain their channel-transporting function within bilayer membranes under up-scaled operating conditions. PMID:24014054

  3. Intrinsic defect formation in peptide self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, Li; Zhao, Yurong; Xu, Hai; Wang, Yanting

    2015-07-01

    In contrast to extensively studied defects in traditional materials, we report here a systematic investigation of the formation mechanism of intrinsic defects in self-assembled peptide nanostructures. The Monte Carlo simulations with our simplified dynamic hierarchical model revealed that the symmetry breaking of layer bending mode at the two ends during morphological transformation is responsible for intrinsic defect formation, whose microscopic origin is the mismatch between layer stacking along the side-chain direction and layer growth along the hydrogen bond direction. Moreover, defect formation does not affect the chirality of the self-assembled structure, which is determined by the initial steps of the peptide self-assembly process.

  4. Colloidosome like structures: self-assembly of silica microrods

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Datskos, P.; Polizos, G.; Bhandari, M.; Cullen, D. A.; Sharma, J.

    2016-03-07

    Self-assembly of one-dimensional structures is attracting a great deal of interest because assembled structures can provide better properties compared to individual building blocks. We demonstrate silica microrod self-assembly by exploiting Pickering emulsion based strategy. Micron-sized silica rods were synthesized employing previously reported methods based on polyvinylpyrrolidone/ pentanol emulsion droplets. Moreover, rods self-assembled to make structures in the range of z10 40 mm. Smooth rods assembled better than segmented rods. Finally, the assembled structures were bonded by weak van der Waals forces.

  5. Examples of Molecular Self-Assembly at Surfaces.

    PubMed

    Whitelam, Stephen

    2015-10-14

    The self-assembly of molecules at surfaces can be caused by a range of physical mechanisms. Assembly can be driven by intermolecular forces, or molecule-surface forces, or both; it can result in structures that are in equilibrium or that are kinetically trapped. Here we review examples of self-assembly at surfaces focusing on a physical understanding of what causes patterns seen in experiment. Some apparently disparate systems can be described in similar physical terms, indicating that simple factors - such as the geometry and energy scale of intermolecular binding - are key to understanding the self-assembly of those systems. PMID:25873520

  6. Peptide-directed self-assembly of hydrogels

    PubMed Central

    Kopeček, Jindřich; Yang, Jiyuan

    2009-01-01

    This review focuses on the self-assembly of macromolecules mediated by the biorecognition of peptide/protein domains. Structures forming α-helices and β-sheets have been used to mediate self-assembly into hydrogels of peptides, reactive copolymers and peptide motifs, block copolymers, and graft copolymers. Structural factors governing the self-assembly of these molecules into precisely defined three-dimensional structures (hydrogels) are reviewed. The incorporation of peptide motifs into hybrid systems, composed of synthetic and natural macromolecules, enhances design opportunities for new biomaterials when compared to individual components. PMID:18952513

  7. Magnetic manipulation of self-assembled colloidal asters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snezhko, Alexey; Aranson, Igor S.

    2011-09-01

    Self-assembled materials must actively consume energy and remain out of equilibrium to support structural complexity and functional diversity. Here we show that a magnetic colloidal suspension confined at the interface between two immiscible liquids and energized by an alternating magnetic field dynamically self-assembles into localized asters and arrays of asters, which exhibit locomotion and shape change. By controlling a small external magnetic field applied parallel to the interface, we show that asters can capture, transport, and position target microparticles. The ability to manipulate colloidal structures is crucial for the further development of self-assembled microrobots.

  8. Magnetic manipulation of self-assembled colloidal asters.

    SciTech Connect

    Snezhko, A.; Aranson, I. S.

    2011-09-01

    Self-assembled materials must actively consume energy and remain out of equilibrium to support structural complexity and functional diversity. Here we show that a magnetic colloidal suspension confined at the interface between two immiscible liquids and energized by an alternating magnetic field dynamically self-assembles into localized asters and arrays of asters, which exhibit locomotion and shape change. By controlling a small external magnetic field applied parallel to the interface, we show that asters can capture, transport, and position target microparticles. The ability to manipulate colloidal structures is crucial for the further development of self-assembled microrobots

  9. Bio-inspired supramolecular self-assembly towards soft nanomaterials

    PubMed Central

    LIN, Yiyang; MAO, Chuanbin

    2011-01-01

    Supramolecular self-assembly has proven to be a reliable approach towards versatile nanomaterials based on multiple weak intermolecular forces. In this review, the development of bio-inspired supramolecular self-assembly into soft materials and their applications are summarized. Molecular systems used in bio-inspired “bottom-up self-assembly” involve small organic molecules, peptides or proteins, nucleic acids, and viruses. Self-assembled soft nanomaterials have been exploited in various applications such as inorganic nanomaterial synthesis, drug or gene delivery, tissue engineering, and so on. PMID:21980594

  10. Nature of Light-Harvesting-System Excited States Prepared by Thermal Light

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Botero, Juan David; Brumer, Paul; Pachon, Leonardo; Grupo de Fisica Atomica y Molecular Team; Chemical Physics Theory Group Team

    2015-03-01

    The nature of excited states produced by incoherent natural thermal light is analyzed in the context of light-harvesting system. In the absence of proteomic environments or solvents, it is shown that natural thermal light generates extremely long-lasting coherent dynamics in photosynthetic light-harvesting systems provided by the super-Ohmic character of the radiation, the lack of pure dephasing dynamics and the small energy gap between donors and acceptors. Although this unexpectected result has the potential of changing the entire direction of the discussion on the nature of excitonic states prepared by sunlight, when the environment is considered, the extremely long-lasting coherences induced by incoherent light are removed and stationary coherences are established in the photosynthetic light-harvesting system.

  11. Measuring quantum effects in photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes with multipartite entanglement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smyth, Cathal

    This thesis is a compilation of studies on delocalization measures, entanglement, and the role of quantum coherence in electronic energy transfer (EET) in light-harvesting complexes. The first two chapters after the introduction provide foundational knowledge of quantum information and light-harvesting, respectively. Chapter 2 introduces concepts from quantum information such as purity, bipartite entanglement and criteria for its measurement. The peripheral light-harvesting complex LH2, isolated from the anoxygenic purple bacterium Rhodopseudomonas acidophila, is employed as model system of interest. This light-harvesting complex, along with a description of the process of light-harvesting, the presence of quantum coherence, and the different models used to simulate EET, are described in chapter 3. In combination these two chapters lay the foundation for chapter 4, a critical assessment of the current measures of delocalization employed in EET studies, their relationship, and overall effectiveness. The conclusion is that entanglement based measures are most effective at measuring quantum effects, and that they can be related to more conventional delocalization measures such as the inverse participation ratio (IPR) by taking into account the entropy of the system under study. All the measures within this chapter are known as bipartite measures, and only measure the strength of correlation between two sites. The fifth chapter presents the core of this thesis. Following a brief introduction to the concept of multipartite entanglement, the development of multipartite delocalization measures that give high-resolution information on quantum coherence in light-harvesting complexes is detailed. In contrast to other measures, these analytical measures can detect many body correlations in large systems undergoing decoherence. We determine that, much like the bipartite entanglement based measures of chapter 4, these measures are also a function of system entropy, and have a

  12. Molecularly engineered self-assembling membranes for cell-mediated degradation.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Daniela S; Lin, Yi-An; Cui, Honggang; Hubbell, Jeffrey A; Reis, Rui L; Azevedo, Helena S

    2015-03-11

    The use of peptide engineering to develop self-assembling membranes that are responsive to cellular enzyme activities is reported. The membranes are obtained by combining hyaluronan (HA) and a rationally designed peptide amphiphile (PA) containing a proteolytic domain (GPQGIWGQ octapeptide) sensitive to matrix metalloproteinase-1 (MMP-1). Insertion of an octapeptide in a typical PA structure does not disturb its self-assembly into fibrillar nanostructures neither the ability to form membranes with HA. In vitro enzymatic degradation with hyaluronidase and MMP-1 shows that membranes containing the MMP-1 substrate exhibit enhanced enzymatic degradation, compared with control membranes (absence of MMP-1 cleavable peptide or containing a MMP-1 insensitive sequence), being completely degraded after 7 days. Cell viability and proliferation is minimally affected by the enzymatically cleavable functionality of the membrane, but the presence of MMP-1 cleavable sequence does stimulate the secretion of MMP-1 by fibroblasts and interfere with matrix deposition, particularly the deposition of collagen. By showing cell-responsiveness to biochemical signals presented on self-assembling membranes, this study highlights the ability of modulating certain cellular activities through matrix engineering. This concept can be further explored to understand the cellular remodeling process and as a strategy to develop artificial matrices with more biomimetic degradation for tissue engineering applications. PMID:25413155

  13. Cooperative Self-Assembly Transfer from Hierarchical Supramolecular Polymers to Gold Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Coelho, João Paulo; Tardajos, Gloria; Stepanenko, Vladimir; Rödle, Alexander; Fernández, Gustavo; Guerrero-Martínez, Andrés

    2015-11-24

    The transfer of information encoded by molecular subcomponents is a key phenomenon that regulates the biological inheritance in living organisms, yet there is a lack of understanding of related transfer mechanisms at the supramolecular level in artificial multicomponent systems. Our contribution to tackle this challenge has focused on the design of a thiolated π-conjugated linking unit, whose hierarchical, cooperative self-assembly in nonpolar media can be efficiently transferred from the molecular to the nanoscopic level, thereby enabling the reversible self-assembly of gold nanoparticle (AuNP) clusters. The transfer of supramolecular information by the linking π-system can only take place when a specific cooperative nucleation-elongation mechanism is operative, whereas low-ordered noncooperative assemblies formed below a critical concentration do not suffice to extend the order to the AuNP level. To the best of our knowledge, our approach has allowed for the first time a deep analysis of the hierarchy levels and thermodynamics involved in the self-assembly of AuNPs. PMID:26493583

  14. Organization of Inorganic Nanomaterials via Programmable DNA Self-Assembly and Peptide Molecular Recognition

    PubMed Central

    Carter, Joshua D.; LaBean, Thomas H.

    2011-01-01

    An interesting alternative to top-down nanofabrication is to imitate biology, where nanoscale materials frequently integrate organic molecules for self-assembly and molecular recognition with ordered, inorganic minerals to achieve mechanical, sensory, or other advantageous functions. Using biological systems as inspiration, researchers have sought to mimic the nanoscale composite materials produced in nature. Here, we describe a combination of self-assembly, molecular recognition, and templating, relying on an oligonucleotide covalently conjugated to a high-affinity gold-binding peptide. After integration of the peptide-coupled DNA into a self-assembling superstructure, the templated peptides recognize and bind gold nanoparticles. In addition to providing new ways of building functional multi-nanoparticle systems, this work provides experimental proof that a single peptide molecule is sufficient for immobilization of a nanoparticle. This molecular construction strategy, combining DNA assembly and peptide recognition, can be thought of as programmable, granular, artificial biomineralization. We also describe the important observation that the addition of 1–2% Tween 20 surfactant to the solution during gold particle binding allows the gold nanoparticles to remain soluble within the magnesium containing DNA assembly buffer under conditions that usually lead to the aggregation and precipitation of the nanoparticles. PMID:21314176

  15. Nanoparticles Self-Assembly Driven by High Affinity Repeat Protein Pairing.

    PubMed

    Gurunatha, Kargal L; Fournier, Agathe C; Urvoas, Agathe; Valerio-Lepiniec, Marie; Marchi, Valérie; Minard, Philippe; Dujardin, Erik

    2016-03-22

    Proteins are the most specific yet versatile biological self-assembling agents with a rich chemistry. Nevertheless, the design of new proteins with recognition capacities is still in its infancy and has seldom been exploited for the self-assembly of functional inorganic nanoparticles. Here, we report on the protein-directed assembly of gold nanoparticles using purpose-designed artificial repeat proteins having a rigid but modular 3D architecture. αRep protein pairs are selected for their high mutual affinity from a library of 10(9) variants. Their conjugation onto gold nanoparticles drives the massive colloidal assembly of free-standing, one-particle thick films. When the average number of proteins per nanoparticle is lowered, the extent of self-assembly is limited to oligomeric particle clusters. Finally, we demonstrate that the aggregates are reversibly disassembled by an excess of one free protein. Our approach could be optimized for applications in biosensing, cell targeting, or functional nanomaterials engineering. PMID:26863288

  16. Electronic structure of covalently linked zinc bacteriochlorin molecular arrays: insights into molecular design for NIR light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Shrestha, Kushal; González-Delgado, Jessica M; Blew, James H; Jakubikova, Elena

    2014-10-23

    Pigment-based molecular arrays, especially those based on porphyrins, have been extensively studied as viable components of artificial light harvesting devices. Unlike porphyrins, bacteriochlorins absorb strongly in the NIR, yet little is known of the applicability of covalently linked bacteriochlorin-based arrays in this arena. To lay the foundation for future studies of excited state properties of such arrays, we present a systematic study of the ground state electronic structure of zinc bacteriochlorin (ZnBC) molecular arrays with various linkers and linker attachment sites (meso vs β) employing density functional theory in combination with the energy-based fragmentation (EBF) method, and the EBF with molecular orbitals (EBF-MO) method. We find that the level of steric hindrance between the ZnBC and the linker is directly correlated with the amount of ground sate electronic interactions between the ZnBCs. Low steric hindrance between the ZnBC and the linker found in alkyne-linked arrays results in strongly interacting arrays that are characterized by a decrease in the HOMO-LUMO energy gaps, large orbital energy dispersion in the frontier region, and low ZnBC-linker rotational barriers. In contrast, sterically hindered linkers, such as aryl-based linkers, result in weakly interacting arrays characterized by increased orbital energy degeneracy in the frontier region and high ZnBC-linker rotational barriers. For all linkers studied, the level of steric hindrance decreases when the ZnBCs are linked at the β position. Hence, ZnBC arrays that exhibit strong, weak, or intermediate ground-state electronic interactions can be realized by adjusting the level of steric hindrance with a judicious choice of the linker type and linker attachment site. Such tuning may be essential for design of light harvesting arrays with desired spectral properties. PMID:25237715

  17. Self assembly: An approach to terascale integration

    SciTech Connect

    Singer, S.

    1993-09-01

    Surely one of the most remarkable accomplishments of modern times has been the miniaturization of electronic components, starting with discrete transistors and leading to Very Large Scale Integrated (VLSI) Circuits which will soon contain almost 100 million components in a few square centimeters. It led to an information processing industry that fuels almost every aspect of industrial societies and that has brought manifold benefits to their citizens. Although continuation of the miniaturization process is likely to produce even greater benefits, many experts are concerned that extrapolation of traditional silicon VLSI techniques will meet with increasingly severe difficulties. Some of these are fundamental in nature, e. g., granularity and fluctuations in semiconductors and interconnects and proximity effects such as tunneling. The first major difficulty to be encountered will be a rising cost of products due to increased complexity and difficulty of manufacturing and assembly. Such difficulties are likely to be seen in about 10 years when minimum component sizes are expected to decrease below 0.15--0.2 {mu}m. If alternatives to present VLSI techniques are to be available when needed, work on them must start now. At Los Alamos, we are exploring the feasibility of ultrasmall wires and switches that self-assemble themselves into computing elements and circuits. Their operation is based on the quantum properties of nanometer scale molecular clusters. This paper will describe our efforts in the development of these components and will summarize our work in four areas: (1) the development of conducting molecular wires, (2) conducting nanoparticle wires and switches based on the Coulomb Blockade principle, (3) the development of advanced architectures that benefit from the use of such components and that significantly advance the art of high performance computing, and (4) the development of novel methods for attaining sub-Angstrom 3-D non-destructive imaging.

  18. Differentially photo-crosslinked polymers enable self-assembling microfluidics

    PubMed Central

    Jamal, Mustapha; Zarafshar, Aasiyeh M.; Gracias, David H.

    2012-01-01

    An important feature of naturally self-assembled systems such as leaves and tissues is that they are curved and have embedded fluidic channels that enable the transport of nutrients to, or removal of waste from, specific three-dimensional (3D) regions. Here, we report the self-assembly of photopatterned polymers, and consequently microfluidic devices, into curved geometries. We discovered that differentially photo-crosslinked SU-8 films spontaneously and reversibly curved upon film de-solvation and re-solvation. Photolithographic patterning of the SU-8 films enabled the self-assembly of cylinders, cubes, and bidirectionally folded sheets. We integrated polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microfluidic channels with these SU-8 films to self-assemble curved microfluidic networks. PMID:22068594

  19. Activity-assisted self-assembly of colloidal particles.

    PubMed

    Mallory, S A; Cacciuto, A

    2016-08-01

    We outline a basic strategy of how self-propulsion can be used to improve the yield of a typical colloidal self-assembly process. The success of this approach is predicated on the thoughtful design of the colloidal building block as well as how self-propulsion is endowed to the particle. As long as a set of criteria are satisfied, it is possible to significantly increase the rate of self-assembly, and greatly expand the window in parameter space where self-assembly can occur. In addition, we show that by tuning the relative on-off time of the self-propelling force it is possible to modulate the effective speed of the colloids allowing for further optimization of the self-assembly process. PMID:27627360

  20. Directed self-assembly of proteins into discrete radial patterns

    PubMed Central

    Thakur, Garima; Prashanthi, Kovur; Thundat, Thomas

    2013-01-01

    Unlike physical patterning of materials at nanometer scale, manipulating soft matter such as biomolecules into patterns is still in its infancy. Self-assembled monolayer (SAM) with surface density gradient has the capability to drive biomolecules in specific directions to create hierarchical and discrete structures. Here, we report on a two-step process of self-assembly of the human serum albumin (HSA) protein into discrete ring structures based on density gradient of SAM. The methodology involves first creating a 2-dimensional (2D) polyethylene glycol (PEG) islands with responsive carboxyl functionalities. Incubation of proteins on such pre-patterned surfaces results in direct self-assembly of protein molecules around PEG islands. Immobilization and adsorption of protein on such structures over time evolve into the self-assembled patterns. PMID:23719678

  1. Urethane tetrathiafulvalene derivatives: synthesis, self-assembly and electrochemical properities

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Xiang; Lai, Guoqiao; Li, Zhifang; Ma, Yuwen; Yuan, Xiao; Shen, Yongjia

    2015-01-01

    Summary This paper reports the self-assembly of two new tetrathiafulvalene (TTF) derivatives that contain one or two urethane groups. The formation of nanoribbons was evidenced by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD), which showed that the self-assembly ability of T 1 was better than that of T 2. The results revealed that more urethane groups in a molecule did not necessarily instigate self-assembly. UV–vis and FTIR spectra were measured to explore noncovalent interactions. The driving forces for self-assembly of TTF derivatives were mainly hydrogen bond interactions and π–π stacking interactions. The electronic conductivity of the T 1 and T 2 films was tested by a four-probe method. PMID:26734083

  2. Supramolecular chirality in self-assembled peptide amphiphile nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Garifullin, Ruslan; Guler, Mustafa O

    2015-08-11

    Induced supramolecular chirality was investigated in the self-assembled peptide amphiphile (PA) nanosystems. Having shown that peptide chirality can be transferred to the covalently-attached achiral pyrene moiety upon PA self-assembly, the chiral information is transferred to molecular pyrene via weak noncovalent interactions. In the first design of a supramolecular chiral system, the chromophore was covalently attached to a peptide sequence (VVAGH) via an ε-aminohexanoic acid spacer. Covalent attachment yielded a PA molecule self-assembling into nanofibers. In the second design, the chromophore was encapsulated within the hydrophobic core of self-assembled nanofibers of another PA consisting of the same peptide sequence attached to lauric acid. We observed that supramolecular chirality was induced in the chromophore by PA assembly into chiral nanostructures, whether it was covalently attached, or noncovalently bound. PMID:26146021

  3. Modeling the Kinetics of Open Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Verdier, Timothée; Foret, Lionel; Castelnovo, Martin

    2016-07-01

    In this work, we explore theoretically the kinetics of molecular self-assembly in the presence of constant monomer flux as an input, and a maximal size. The proposed model is supposed to reproduce the dynamics of viral self-assembly for enveloped virus. It turns out that the kinetics of open self-assembly is rather quantitatively different from the kinetics of similar closed assembly. In particular, our results show that the convergence toward the stationary state is reached through assembly waves. Interestingly, we show that the production of complete clusters is much more efficient in the presence of a constant input flux, rather than providing all monomers at the beginning of the self-assembly. PMID:27295398

  4. Scaling up self-assembly: bottom-up approaches to macroscopic particle organization.

    PubMed

    Lash, M H; Fedorchak, M V; McCarthy, J J; Little, S R

    2015-07-28

    This review presents an overview of recent work in the field of non-Brownian particle self-assembly. Compared to nanoparticles that naturally self-assemble due to Brownian motion, larger, non-Brownian particles (d > 6 μm) are less prone to autonomously organize into crystalline arrays. The tendency for particle systems to experience immobilization and kinetic arrest grows with particle radius. In order to overcome this kinetic limitation, some type of external driver must be applied to act as an artificial "thermalizing force" upon non-Brownian particles, inducing particle motion and subsequent crystallization. Many groups have explored the use of various agitation methods to overcome the natural barriers preventing self-assembly to which non-Brownian particles are susceptible. The ability to create materials from a bottom-up approach with these characteristics would allow for precise control over their pore structure (size and distribution) and surface properties (topography, functionalization and area), resulting in improved regulation of key characteristics such as mechanical strength, diffusive properties, and possibly even photonic properties. This review will highlight these approaches, as well as discuss the potential impact of bottom-up macroscale particle assembly. The applications of such technology range from customizable and autonomously self-assembled niche microenvironments for drug delivery and tissue engineering to new acoustic dampening, battery, and filtration materials, among others. Additionally, crystals made from non-Brownian particles resemble naturally derived materials such as opals, zeolites, and biological tissue (i.e. bone, cartilage and lung), due to their high surface area, pore distribution, and tunable (multilevel) hierarchy. PMID:25947543

  5. Vortical superlattices in a gold nanorods' self-assembled monolayer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Yong; Liang, Yujia; Chen, Dongxue; Wu, Xiaochun; Dai, Luru; Liu, Qian

    2014-02-01

    This paper describes the novel vortical self-assembly of CTAB-capped gold nanorods. Representative left-hand, radial, and right-hand vortices are shown. Micelles formed by CTAB molecules enhance the organized self-assembly process. The drag force of solvent flow and dynamic vortex flow in the thin solvent layer are thought to be responsible for the final vortical superlattices. FDTD simulation suggests these structures have potential applications in nanofocusing and polarized light response.

  6. Synthetic Self-Assembled Materials in Biological Environments.

    PubMed

    Versluis, Frank; van Esch, Jan H; Eelkema, Rienk

    2016-06-01

    Synthetic self-assembly has long been recognized as an excellent approach for the formation of ordered structures on the nanoscale. Although the development of synthetic self-assembling materials has often been inspired by principles observed in nature (e.g., the assembly of lipids, DNA, proteins), until recently the self-assembly of synthetic molecules has mainly been investigated ex vivo. The past few years however, have witnessed the emergence of a research field in which synthetic, self-assembling systems are used that are capable of operating as bioactive materials in biological environments. Here, this up-and-coming field, which has the potential of becoming a key area in chemical biology and medicine, is reviewed. Two main categories of applications of self-assembly in biological environments are identified and discussed, namely therapeutic and imaging agents. Within these categories key concepts, such as triggers and molecular constraints for in vitro/in vivo self-assembly and the mode of interaction between the assemblies and the biological materials will be discussed. PMID:27042774

  7. Electric Field Controlled Self-Assembly of Hierarchically Ordered Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Velichko, Yuri S.; Mantei, Jason R.; Bitton, Ronit; Carvajal, Daniel; Shull, Kenneth R.; Stupp, Samuel I.

    2012-01-01

    Self-assembly in the presence of external forces is an adaptive, directed organization of molecular components under nonequilibrium conditions. While forces may be generated as a result of spontaneous interactions among components of a system, intervention with external forces can significantly alter the final outcome of self-assembly. Superimposing these intrinsic and extrinsic forces provides greater degrees of freedom to control the structure and function of self-assembling materials. In this work we investigate the role of electric fields during the dynamic self-assembly of a negatively charged polyelectrolyte and a positively charged peptide amphiphile in water leading to the formation of an ordered membrane. In the absence of electric fields, contact between the two solutions of oppositely charged molecules triggers the growth of closed membranes with vertically oriented fibrils that encapsulate the polyelectrolyte solution. This process of self-assembly is intrinsically driven by excess osmotic pressure of counterions, and the electric field is found to modify the kinetics of membrane formation, and also its morphology and properties. Depending on the strength and orientation of the field we observe a significant increase or decrease of up to nearly 100% in membrane thickness, as well as the controlled rotation of nanofiber growth direction by 90 degrees, resulting in a significant increase in mechanical stiffness. These results suggest the possibility of using electric fields to control structure in self-assembly processes involving diffusion of oppositely charged molecules. PMID:23166533

  8. Electric Field Controlled Self-Assembly of Hierarchically Ordered Membranes.

    PubMed

    Velichko, Yuri S; Mantei, Jason R; Bitton, Ronit; Carvajal, Daniel; Shull, Kenneth R; Stupp, Samuel I

    2012-01-25

    Self-assembly in the presence of external forces is an adaptive, directed organization of molecular components under nonequilibrium conditions. While forces may be generated as a result of spontaneous interactions among components of a system, intervention with external forces can significantly alter the final outcome of self-assembly. Superimposing these intrinsic and extrinsic forces provides greater degrees of freedom to control the structure and function of self-assembling materials. In this work we investigate the role of electric fields during the dynamic self-assembly of a negatively charged polyelectrolyte and a positively charged peptide amphiphile in water leading to the formation of an ordered membrane. In the absence of electric fields, contact between the two solutions of oppositely charged molecules triggers the growth of closed membranes with vertically oriented fibrils that encapsulate the polyelectrolyte solution. This process of self-assembly is intrinsically driven by excess osmotic pressure of counterions, and the electric field is found to modify the kinetics of membrane formation, and also its morphology and properties. Depending on the strength and orientation of the field we observe a significant increase or decrease of up to nearly 100% in membrane thickness, as well as the controlled rotation of nanofiber growth direction by 90 degrees, resulting in a significant increase in mechanical stiffness. These results suggest the possibility of using electric fields to control structure in self-assembly processes involving diffusion of oppositely charged molecules. PMID:23166533

  9. Effect of polymerization on hierarchical self-assembly into nanosheets.

    PubMed

    Ikeda, Taichi

    2015-01-20

    The oligomers consisting of phenyl-capped bithiophene and tetra(ethylene glycol)s linked by azide-alkyne Huisgen cycloaddition were synthesized. The relationship between the degree of polymerization and self-assembling ability was investigated in o-dichlorobenzene and dimethyl sulfoxide. From the absorption spectrum, it was confirmed that the critical degree of polymerization (CDP) for thiophene unit aggregation was 4. The morphology of the aggregated product was observed by atomic force microscopy. The oligomers 4mer and 5mer could not self-assemble into well-defined structures due to the weak driving force for the self-assembly. In the cases of 6mer and 7mer, aggregates with nonwell-defined and nanosheet structures coexisted. In the cases of 8mer and 9mer, the nanosheet was the main product. The critical point between 7mer and 8mer could be confirmed by different aggregation behaviors in the cooling process of the solution (nonsigmoidal and sigmoidal). In the cases of 8mer and 9mer, polymer folding prior to intermolecular self-assembly, which was supported by sigmoidal aggregation behavior, leads to the nanosheet formation. On the contrary, shorter oligomers than 8mer experience intermolecular aggregation prior to intramolecular polymer folding, which was supported by the nonsigmoidal aggregation behavior. This is the first report to prove the existence of CDP for folded polymer nanosheet formation which requires hierarchical self-assembly, i.e., polymer folding followed by intermolecular self-assembly. PMID:25526560

  10. Structurally Flexible C₃-Symmetric Receptors for Molecular Recognition and Their Self-Assembly Properties.

    PubMed

    Singh, Ashutosh S; Sun, Shih-Sheng

    2015-12-01

    The bioinspired design and synthesis of building blocks and their assemblies by the supramolecular approach has ever fascinated scientists to utilize such artificial systems for numerous purposes. Flexibility is a basic feature of natural systems. However, in artificial systems this is difficult to control, especially if there is no preorganization of the component(s) of a system. We have designed and synthesized a series of C3 -symmetric N-bridged flexible receptors and successfully utilized them to selectively entrap the notorious and toxic nitrate anion in aqueous medium. This was the first report of highest binding affinity for the nitrate anion in aqueous medium. An impressive self-sorting phenomenon of reversibly formed hydrogen-bonded capsules, which self-assembled from flexible tripodal receptors having branches of similar size and bearing the same amide functionality, has been disclosed. Encapsulated nitrate anion has been further utilized for the photochemical [2+2] cycloaddition reaction for the synthesis of strained four-membered ring structures through dynamic self-assembly. In this Personal Account, we summarize these results showing the utility of naturally inspired flexibility in artificial systems. PMID:26202256

  11. Photoelectron transport tuning of self-assembled subbands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiong, Zhengwei; Wang, Xinmin; Wu, Weidong; Wang, Xuemin; Peng, Liping; Zhao, Yan; Yan, Dawei; Jiang, Tao; Shen, Changle; Zhan, Zhiqiang; Cao, Linhong; Li, Weihua

    2016-02-01

    Conventionally, electrical transport of quantum subbands occurs at very high electric fields, indicating that the medium is easy to break down. In the experiments and practical applications, the extreme condition is difficult to satisfy. For quantum information transmission, low power consumption and convenient implementation are what we expect. In this paper, we engineered a special quantum dot array (QDA) embedded in a single crystal matrix. By external optical field excitation, we found a series of subbands made of the self-assembled QDA discretely located in the matrix. Changing the spacing between the quantum dots leads to the variation of subband spacing. Artificially manipulating the microcosmic QDA system can bring interesting macroscopic effects, such as an enhanced absorption intensity in the ultraviolet range, a blue-shift of the surface plasmon resonance peak and nonlinear absorption changed from two-photon absorption to saturated absorption. The intrinsic mechanism of the subband optical response was revealed due to the strong quantum confinement effect and dominant intraband transitions. The weak surface plasmon resonance absorption of Ni QDA gave an excellent figure of merit of the order of 10-10. The composite films are expectation enough to become a prime candidate for nonlinear applications near 532 nm. Therefore with interplay of the weak optical field and subbands, we achieved a tunable photoelectron transport process.Conventionally, electrical transport of quantum subbands occurs at very high electric fields, indicating that the medium is easy to break down. In the experiments and practical applications, the extreme condition is difficult to satisfy. For quantum information transmission, low power consumption and convenient implementation are what we expect. In this paper, we engineered a special quantum dot array (QDA) embedded in a single crystal matrix. By external optical field excitation, we found a series of subbands made of the self-assembled

  12. Structures Self-Assembled Through Directional Solidification

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dynys, Frederick W.; Sayir, Ali

    2005-01-01

    dry plasma etch. The wet chemical etches the silicon away, exposing the TiSi2 rods, whereas plasma etching preferentially etches the Si-TiSi2 interface to form a crater. The porous architectures are applicable to fabricating microdevices or creating templates for part fabrication. The porous rod structure can serve as a platform for fabricating microplasma devices for propulsion or microheat exchangers and for fabricating microfilters for miniatured chemical reactors. Although more work is required, self-assembly from DSE can have a role in microdevice fabrication.

  13. Specific RNA self-assembly with minimal paranemic motifs

    PubMed Central

    Afonin, Kirill A.; Cieply, Dennis J.; Leontis, Neocles B.

    2016-01-01

    The paranemic crossover (PX) is a motif for assembling two nucleic acid molecules using Watson-Crick (WC) basepairing without unfolding pre-formed secondary structure in the individual molecules. Once formed, the paranemic assembly motif comprises adjacent parallel double helices that cross over at every possible point over the length of the motif. The interaction is reversible as it does not require denaturation of basepairs internal to each interacting molecular unit. Paranemic assembly has been demonstrated for DNA but not for RNA, and only for motifs with four or more cross-over points and lengths of five or more helical half-turns. Here we report the design of RNA molecules that paranemically assemble with the minimum number of two cross-overs spanning the major groove to form paranemic motifs with a length of three half-turns (3HT). Dissociation constants (Kds) were measured for series of molecules in which the number of basepairs between the cross-over points was varied from five to eight basepairs. The paranemic 3HT complex with six basepairs (3HT_6M) was found to be the most stable with Kd = 1×10−8 M. The half-time for kinetic exchange of the 3HT_6M complex was determined to be ~100 minutes, from which we calculated association and dissociation rate constants ka = 5.11×103 M−1sec−1 and kd = 5.11×10−5 sec−1. RNA paranemic assembly of 3HT and 5HT complexes is blocked by single-base substitutions that disrupt individual inter-molecular Watson-Crick basepairs and is restored by compensatory substitutions that restore those basepairs. The 3HT motif appears suitable for specific, programmable, and reversible tecto-RNA self-assembly for constructing artificial RNA molecular machines. PMID:18072767

  14. A path to designing self-assembling surface patterns on particles for self-assembly of the particles themselves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindgren, Oskar; Edlund, Erik; Nilsson Jacobi, Martin

    2014-03-01

    Patchy colloids are promising candidates for self-assembly of metamaterials since directional attraction and high specificity reduces the ambiguity of the low energy state, this simplifies the design of self-assembling building blocks. However, the large scale fabrication of colloids with specific patterns becomes more difficult as the complexity of the surface pattern increases. Self-organiziation of the surface patterns themselves have been suggested as a promising fabrication method due to the new types of patterns it makes accessible. We present a method for designing self-assembling patterns in multiple components system on particle surfaces. The method is based on an analytical treatment of an effective interaction representation of real systems. As an example, we use a simplified model of Alkalethoils-on-gold to show how a limited amount of system parameters can be tuned in order to cause self-assembly of desired surface patterns. We perform in silico self-assembly of surface patterns on spherical colloids, the patterns then causes the colloids themselves to self-assemble into various geometric target structures like strings, membranes, cubic aggregates and lattices. OL and MNJ acknowledge support from the SuMo Biomaterials center of excellence.

  15. The variability of light-harvesting complexes in aerobic anoxygenic phototrophs.

    PubMed

    Selyanin, Vadim; Hauruseu, Dzmitry; Koblížek, Michal

    2016-04-01

    Light-harvesting capacity was investigated in six species of aerobic anoxygenic phototrophic (AAP) bacteria using absorption spectroscopy, fluorescence emission spectroscopy, and pigment analyses. Aerobically grown AAP cells contained approx. 140-1800 photosynthetic reaction centers per cell, an order of magnitude less than purple non-sulfur bacteria grown semiaerobically. Three of the studied AAP species did not contain outer light-harvesting complexes, and the size of their reaction center core complexes (RC-LH1 core complexes) varied between 29 and 36 bacteriochlorophyll molecules. In AAP species containing accessory antennae, the size was frequently reduced, providing between 5 and 60 additional bacteriochlorophyll molecules. In Roseobacter litoralis, it was found that cells grown at a higher light intensity contained more reaction centers per cell, while the size of the light-harvesting complexes was reduced. The presented results document that AAP species have both the reduced number and size of light-harvesting complexes which is consistent with the auxiliary role of phototrophy in this bacterial group. PMID:26482589

  16. Preparation of native and recombinant light-harvesting chlorophyll-a/b complex.

    PubMed

    Rühle, Wolfgang; Paulsen, Harald

    2011-01-01

    Procedures to isolate native light-harvesting chlorophyll-a/b complex (LHCIIb) and to reconstitute recombinant LHCIIb are described. Separation of trimeric from monomeric forms and free pigment by sucrose density-gradient ultracentrifugation can be applied to both native and reconstituted complexes. The preparations are characterized by their pigment composition, protein pattern, and spectral properties. PMID:20960126

  17. Preparation of native and recombinant light-harvesting chlorophyll-a/b complex.

    PubMed

    Rühle, Wolfgang; Paulsen, Harald

    2004-01-01

    Procedures to isolate native light-harvesting chlorophyll-a/b complex (LHCIIb) and to reconstitute recombinant LHCIIb are described. Separation of trimeric from monomeric forms and free pigment by sucrose density-gradient ultracentrifugation can be applied to both native and reconstituted complexes. The preparations are characterized by their pigment composition, protein pattern and spectral properties. PMID:15187272

  18. Studying the Effect of Light Quality on the Size of the Photosystem II Light Harvesting Complex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Muhoz, Romualdo; Quiles, Maria J.

    2003-01-01

    In this article the effect of light quality on the size of the photosystem II (PSII) light harvesting complex (LHCII) is studied by measuring the chlorophyll fluorescence emitted by leaf sections of oat ("Avena sativa," var. Prevision) plants previously treated with either white light or with light filtered through blue, green, red or farred…

  19. Allelic variations of a light harvesting chlorophyll A/B protein gene (Lhcb1) associated with agronomic traits in Barley

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b-binding protein (LHCP) is one of the most abundant chloroplast proteins in plants. Its main function is to collect and transfer light energy to photosynthetic reaction centers. However, the roles of different LHCPs in light-harvesting antenna systems remain obscure. ...

  20. Dynamic, Directed Self-Assembly of Nanoparticles via Toggled Interactions.

    PubMed

    Sherman, Zachary M; Swan, James W

    2016-05-24

    Crystals self-assembled from nanoparticles have useful properties such as optical activity and sensing capability. During fabrication, however, gelation and glassification often leave these materials arrested in defective or disordered metastable states. This is a key difficulty preventing adoption of self-assembled nanoparticle materials at scale. Processes which suppress kinetic arrest and defect formation while accelerating growth of ordered materials are essential for bottom-up approaches to creating nanomaterials. Dynamic, directed self-assembly processes in which the interactions between self-assembling components are actuated temporally offer one promising methodology for accelerating and controlling bottom-up growth of nanostructures. In this article, we show through simulation and theory how time-dependent, periodically toggled interparticle attractions can avoid kinetic barriers and yield well-ordered crystalline domains for a dispersion of nanoparticles interacting via a short-ranged, isotropic potential. The growth mechanism and terminal structure of the dispersion are controlled by parameters of the toggling protocol. This control allows for selection of processes that yield rapid self-assembled, low defect crystals. Although self-assembly via periodically toggled attractions is inherently unsteady and out-of-equilibrium, its outcome is predicted by a first-principles theory of nonequilibrium thermodynamics. The theory necessitates equality of the time average of pressure and chemical potential in coexisting phases of the dispersion. These quantities are evaluated using well known equations of state. The phase behavior predicted by this theory agrees well with measurements made in Brownian dynamics simulations of sedimentation equilibrium and homogeneous nucleation. The theory can easily be extended to model dynamic self-assembly directed by other toggled conservative force fields. PMID:27096705

  1. Large Femtosecond Two-Photon Absorption Cross-Sections of Fullerosome Vesicle Nanostructures Derived from Highly Photoresponsive Amphiphilic C60-Light-Harvesting Fluorene Dyad

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Min; Nalla, Venkatram; Jeon, Seaho; Mamidala, Venkatesh; Ji, Wei; Tan, Loon-Seng; Cooper, Thomas; Chiang, Long Y.

    2011-01-01

    We demonstrated ultrafast femtosecond nonlinear optical (NLO) absorption characteristics of bilayered fullerosome vesicle nanostructures derived from molecular self-assembly of amphiphilic oligo(ethylene glycolated) C60-(light-harvesting diphenylaminofluorene antenna). Fullerene conjugates were designed to enhance photoresponse in a femtosecond time scale by applying an isomerizable periconjugation linker between the C60 cage and diphenylaminofluorene antenna subunit in an intramolecular contact distance of only < 3.0 Å. Morphology of C60(>DPAF-EG12C1)-based fullerosome nanovesicles in H2O was characterized to consist of a bilayered shell with a sphere diameter of 20–70 nm and a chromophore shell-width of 9.0–10 nm, fitting well with a head-to-head packing configuration of the molecular length. At the estimated effective nanovesicle concentration as low as 5.5 × 10−8 MV (molecular molar concentration of 5.0 × 10−4 M) in H2O, two-photon absorption (2PA) phenomena were found to be the dominating photophysical events showing a large molar concentration-insensitive 2PA cross-section value equivalent to 8500 GM in a form of nanovesicles, on average. The observed NLO characteristics led to a sharp trend of efficient light-transmittance intensity reduction at the input laser intensity above 100 GW/cm2. PMID:22022620

  2. Hierarchical Self-Assembly of Discrete Organoplatinum(II) Metallacycles with Polysaccharide via Electrostatic Interactions and Their Application for Heparin Detection.

    PubMed

    Chen, Li-Jun; Ren, Yuan-Yuan; Wu, Nai-Wei; Sun, Bin; Ma, Jian-Qiu; Zhang, Li; Tan, Hongwei; Liu, Minghua; Li, Xiaopeng; Yang, Hai-Bo

    2015-09-16

    In recent past years, investigation of hierarchical self-assembly for constructing artificial functional materials has attracted considerable attention. Discrete metallacycles based on coordination bonds have proven to be valid scaffolds to fabricate various supramolecular polymers or smart soft matter through hierarchical self-assembly. Here, we present the first example of the hierarchical self-assembly of discrete metallacycles by taking advantage of the positive charges of the organoplatinum(II) metallacycle skeleton through multiple electrostatic interactions. Heparin, a sulfated glycosaminoglycan polymer that has been widely used as an anticoagulant drug, was selected to induce hierarchical self-assembly because of the existence of multiple negative charges. To investigate the hierarchical self-assembly process, an aggregation-induced emission (AIE) active moiety, tetra-phenylethylene (TPE), was introduced onto the metallacycle via coordination-driven self-assembly. Photophysical studies revealed that the addition of heparin to the tris-TPE metallacycles solution resulted in dramatic fluorescence enhancement, which supported the aggregation between metallacycle and heparin driven by multiple electrostatic interactions. Moreover, the entangled pearl-necklace networks were obtained through hierarchical self-assembly as detected by SEM, TEM, and LSCM experiments. In particular, single bead-like chains were observed in the AFM and TEM images, which provided direct, visual evidence for the aggregation of positively charged metallacycles and negatively charged heparin. More interestingly, further optical study demonstrated that this TPE-decorated metallacycle could function as a turn-on fluorescent probe for heparin detection with high sensitivity and selectivity. Thus, this research presents the first example of counter polyanion-induced hierarchical self-assembly of discrete metallacycles and provides a "proof-of-principle" method for heparin sensing and binding

  3. Functional architectures based on self-assembly of bio-inspired dipeptides: Structure modulation and its photoelectronic applications.

    PubMed

    Chen, Chengjun; Liu, Kai; Li, Junbai; Yan, Xuehai

    2015-11-01

    Getting inspiration from nature and further developing functional architectures provides an effective way to design innovative materials and systems. Among bio-inspired materials, dipeptides and its self-assembled architectures with functionalities have recently been the subject of intensive studies. However, there is still a great challenge to explore its applications likely due to the lack of effective adaptation of their self-assembled structures as well as a lack of understanding of the self-assembly mechanisms. In this context, taking diphenylalanine (FF, a core recognition motif for molecular self-assembly of the Alzheimer's β-amyloid polypeptides) as a model of bio-inspired dipeptides, recent strategies on modulation of dipeptide-based architectures were introduced with regard to both covalent (architectures modulation by coupling functional groups) and non-covalent ways (controlled architectures by different assembly pathways). Then, applications are highlighted in some newly emerging fields of innovative photoelectronic devices and materials, such as artificial photosynthetic systems for renewable solar energy storage and renewable optical waveguiding materials for optoelectronic devices. At last, the challenges and future perspectives of these bio-inspired dipeptides are also addressed. PMID:26365127

  4. Sequential programmable self-assembly: Role of cooperative interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halverson, Jonathan D.; Tkachenko, Alexei V.

    2016-03-01

    We propose a general strategy of "sequential programmable self-assembly" that enables a bottom-up design of arbitrary multi-particle architectures on nano- and microscales. We show that a naive realization of this scheme, based on the pairwise additive interactions between particles, has fundamental limitations that lead to a relatively high error rate. This can be overcome by using cooperative interparticle binding. The cooperativity is a well known feature of many biochemical processes, responsible, e.g., for signaling and regulations in living systems. Here we propose to utilize a similar strategy for high precision self-assembly, and show that DNA-mediated interactions provide a convenient platform for its implementation. In particular, we outline a specific design of a DNA-based complex which we call "DNA spider," that acts as a smart interparticle linker and provides a built-in cooperativity of binding. We demonstrate versatility of the sequential self-assembly based on spider-functionalized particles by designing several mesostructures of increasing complexity and simulating their assembly process. This includes a number of finite and repeating structures, in particular, the so-called tetrahelix and its several derivatives. Due to its generality, this approach allows one to design and successfully self-assemble virtually any structure made of a "GEOMAG" magnetic construction toy, out of nanoparticles. According to our results, once the binding cooperativity is strong enough, the sequential self-assembly becomes essentially error-free.

  5. Self-Assembly for the Synthesis of Functional Biomaterials

    PubMed Central

    Stephanopoulos, Nicholas; Ortony, Julia H.; Stupp, Samuel I.

    2012-01-01

    The use of self-assembly for the construction of functional biomaterials is a highly promising and exciting area of research, with great potential for the treatment of injury or disease. By using multiple noncovalent interactions, coded into the molecular design of the constituent components, self-assembly allows for the construction of complex, adaptable, and highly tunable materials with potent biological effects. This review describes some of the seminal advances in the use of self-assembly to make novel systems for regenerative medicine and biology. Materials based on peptides, proteins, DNA, or hybrids thereof have found application in the treatment of a wide range of injuries and diseases, and this review outlines the design principles and practical applications of these systems. Most of the examples covered focus on the synthesis of hydrogels for the scaffolding or transplantation of cells, with an emphasis on the biological, mechanical, and structural properties of the resulting materials. In addition, we will discuss the distinct advantages conferred by self-assembly (compared with traditional covalent materials), and present some of the challenges and opportunities for the next generation of self-assembled biomaterials. PMID:23457423

  6. Harnessing Surface Dislocation Networks for Molecular Self-Assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pohl, Karsten

    2009-03-01

    The controlled fabrication of functional wafer-based nano-arrays is one of the ultimate quests in current nanotechnologies. Well-ordered misfit dislocation networks of ultrathin metal films are viable candidates for the growth of two- dimensional ordered cluster arrays in the nanometer regime. Such bottom-up processes can be very complex, involving collective effects from a large number of atoms. Unraveling the fundamental forces that drive these self-assembly processes requires detailed experimental information at the atomic level of large ensembles of hundreds to thousands of atoms. The combination of variable temperature measurements from our home-built STM correlated with 2D Frenkel-Kontorova models based on first-principle interaction parameters is used to explain how uniform arrays can form with the strain in the thin film as the driving force responsible for the surface self-assembly process. This process is generally applicable to assemble many molecular species thus opening avenues towards complex self-assembled structures based on a lock-and-key type approach. Moreover, when increasing the molecular coverage and/or decreasing the strain in the thin film the intermolecular interactions will eventually dominate the elastic effects and dictate the self-assembly process via molecular structure and functionality. We will show that controlling this delicate balance leads to a richness of structures, ranging from disperse ordered arrays of molecular clusters to patterned self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) of functionalized fullerenes and methanethiol.

  7. Self-assembly of size-controlled liposomes on DNA nanotemplates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Yang; Wang, Jing; Shigematsu, Hideki; Xu, Weiming; Shih, William M.; Rothman, James E.; Lin, Chenxiang

    2016-05-01

    Artificial lipid-bilayer membranes are valuable tools for the study of membrane structure and dynamics. For applications such as the study of vesicular transport and drug delivery, there is a pressing need for artificial vesicles with controlled size. However, controlling vesicle size and shape with nanometre precision is challenging, and approaches to achieve this can be heavily affected by lipid composition. Here, we present a bio-inspired templating method to generate highly monodispersed sub-100-nm unilamellar vesicles, where liposome self-assembly was nucleated and confined inside rigid DNA nanotemplates. Using this method, we produce homogeneous liposomes with four distinct predefined sizes. We also show that the method can be used with a variety of lipid compositions and probe the mechanism of templated liposome formation by capturing key intermediates during membrane self-assembly. The DNA nanotemplating strategy represents a conceptually novel way to guide lipid bilayer formation and could be generalized to engineer complex membrane/protein structures with nanoscale precision.

  8. Self-assembly of size-controlled liposomes on DNA nanotemplates.

    PubMed

    Yang, Yang; Wang, Jing; Shigematsu, Hideki; Xu, Weiming; Shih, William M; Rothman, James E; Lin, Chenxiang

    2016-05-01

    Artificial lipid-bilayer membranes are valuable tools for the study of membrane structure and dynamics. For applications such as the study of vesicular transport and drug delivery, there is a pressing need for artificial vesicles with controlled size. However, controlling vesicle size and shape with nanometre precision is challenging, and approaches to achieve this can be heavily affected by lipid composition. Here, we present a bio-inspired templating method to generate highly monodispersed sub-100-nm unilamellar vesicles, where liposome self-assembly was nucleated and confined inside rigid DNA nanotemplates. Using this method, we produce homogeneous liposomes with four distinct predefined sizes. We also show that the method can be used with a variety of lipid compositions and probe the mechanism of templated liposome formation by capturing key intermediates during membrane self-assembly. The DNA nanotemplating strategy represents a conceptually novel way to guide lipid bilayer formation and could be generalized to engineer complex membrane/protein structures with nanoscale precision. PMID:27102682

  9. Structural and Chemical Control of Supramolecular Coordination Self-Assembly Confined on Metal Surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Ziliang

    This thesis is concerned with the structural and chemical control of two-dimensional (2D) supramolecular self-assemblies through judiciously manipulating bonding motifs at various intrinsic and external conditions. The self-selection and the self-recognition of the noncovalent interactions among organic and/or metallic building blocks govern the structural and chemical properties of the resultant self-assembled two-dimensional nanostructures, accompanying with the thermodynamic and kinetic process as well. In this thesis, we have investigated the supramolecular self-assembly achieved via coordination bonds assisted by transition metals and functional ligands on metal surfaces. The self-assembled nanostructures were studied by ultra-high vacuum scanning tunneling microscopy working at room temperatures. The structural transition processes were also inspected via the low energy electron diffraction. Further, artificial "quantum dots" represented by the cavities of the self-assembled networks were investigated. The modulation of surface electrons by these "quantum dots" was characterized by the local density of states detected by low-temperature scanning tunneling spectroscopy. The major contributions of this thesis are outlined as below: (1) Through modifying the chemical states of organic ligands, a unique coordination Kagome network structure was obtained for the first time by two distinct methods. TPyP (5, 10, 15, 20-tetra(4-pyridyl)porphyrin) species on Au(111) surfaces form the TPyP-Au coordination Kagome network achieved by a novel treatment that was suggested to modify the chemical state of the TPyP. In a condition that the TPyP coexists with Cu on a Au(111), Cu adatoms play two roles in the self-assembly---the coordination with pyridyl end-groups and the reaction with TPyP macrocycles, which control the chemical and structural phase of the self-assembly. Following a high temperature annealing, the same Kagome structure emerged from a precursor rhombus network

  10. Self-assembly and structural-functional flexibility of oxygenic photosynthetic machineries: personal perspectives.

    PubMed

    Garab, Győző

    2016-01-01

    This short review, with a bit of historical aspect and a strong personal bias and emphases on open questions, is focusing on the (macro-)organization and structural-functional flexibilities of the photosynthetic apparatus of oxygenic photosynthetic organisms at different levels of the structural complexity-selected problems that have attracted most my attention in the past years and decades. These include (i) the anisotropic organization of the pigment-protein complexes and photosynthetic membranes-a basic organizing principle of living matter, which can, and probably should be adopted to intelligent materials; (ii) the organization of protein complexes into chiral macrodomains, large self-assembling highly organized but structurally flexible entities with unique spectroscopic fingerprints-structures, where, important, high-level regulatory functions appear to 'reside'; (iii) a novel, dissipation-assisted mechanism of structural changes, based on a thermo-optic effect: ultrafast thermal transients in the close vicinity of dissipation of unused excitation energy, which is capable of inducing elementary structural changes; it makes plants capable of responding to excess excitation with reaction rates proportional to the overexcitation above the light-saturation of photosynthesis; (iv) the 3D ultrastructure of the granum-stroma thylakoid membrane assembly and other multilamellar membrane systems, and their remodelings-associated with regulatory mechanisms; (v) the molecular organization and structural-functional plasticity of the main light-harvesting complex of plants, in relation to their crystal structure and different in vivo and in vitro states; and (vi) the enigmatic role of non-bilayer lipids and lipid phases in the bilayer thylakoid membrane-warranting its high protein content and contributing to its structural flexibility. PMID:26494196

  11. Functional self-assembled lipidic systems derived from renewable resources

    PubMed Central

    Silverman, Julian R.; Samateh, Malick; John, George

    2015-01-01

    Self-assembled lipidic amphiphile systems can create a variety of multi-functional soft materials with value-added properties. When employing natural reagents and following biocatalytic syntheses, self-assembling monomers may be inherently designed for degradation, making them potential alternatives to conventional and persistent polymers. By using non-covalent forces, self-assembled amphiphiles can form nanotubes, fibers, and other stimuli responsive architectures prime for further applied research and incorporation into commercial products. By viewing these lipid derivatives under a lens of green principles, there is the hope that in developing a structure–function relationship and functional smart materials that research may remain safe, economic, and efficient. PMID:26766923

  12. Cell Environment-Differentiated Self-Assembly of Nanofibers.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Zhen; Chen, Peiyao; Xie, Maolin; Wu, Chengfan; Luo, Yufeng; Wang, Wentao; Jiang, Jun; Liang, Gaolin

    2016-09-01

    Employing cellular environment for the self-assembly of supramolecular nanofibers for biological applications has been widely explored. But using one precursor to differentiate the extra- and intracellular environments to self-assemble into two different nanofibers remains challenging. With the knowledge that the extracellualr environment of some cancer cells contains large amounts of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) while their intracellular environment is glutathione (GSH)-abundant in mind, we rationally designed a precursor Cys(SEt)-Glu-Tyr(H2PO3)-Phe-Phe-Gly-CBT (1) that can efficiently yield amphiphilic 2 and 2-D to self-assemble into two different nanofibers in hydrogels under the sequential treatment of ALP and GSH. We envision that, by employing a click condensation reaction, this work offers a platform for facilely postmodulation of supramolecular nanofibers, and the versatile precursor 1 could be used to kill two birds with one stone. PMID:27532322

  13. Self-assembly of tunable protein suprastructures from recombinant oleosin

    PubMed Central

    Vargo, Kevin B.; Parthasarathy, Ranganath; Hammer, Daniel A.

    2012-01-01

    Using recombinant amphiphilic proteins to self-assemble suprastructures would allow precise control over surfactant chemistry and the facile incorporation of biological functionality. We used cryo-TEM to confirm self-assembled structures from recombinantly produced mutants of the naturally occurring sunflower protein, oleosin. We studied the phase behavior of protein self-assembly as a function of solution ionic strength and protein hydrophilic fraction, observing nanometric fibers, sheets, and vesicles. Vesicle membrane thickness correlated with increasing hydrophilic fraction for a fixed hydrophobic domain length. The existence of a bilayer membrane was corroborated in giant vesicles through the localized encapsulation of hydrophobic Nile red and hydrophilic calcein. Circular dichroism revealed that changes in nanostructural morphology in this family of mutants was unrelated to changes in secondary structure. Ultimately, we envision the use of recombinant techniques to introduce novel functionality into these materials for biological applications. PMID:22753512

  14. Actinide sequestration using self-assembled monolayers on mesoporous supports.

    PubMed

    Fryxell, Glen E; Lin, Yuehe; Fiskum, Sandy; Birnbaum, Jerome C; Wu, Hong; Kemner, Ken; Kelly, Shelley

    2005-03-01

    Surfactant templated synthesis of mesoporous ceramics provides a versatile foundation upon which to create high efficiency environmental sorbents. These nanoporous ceramic oxides condense a huge amount of surface area into a very small volume. The ceramic oxide interface is receptive to surface functionalization through molecular self-assembly. The marriage of mesoporous ceramics with self-assembled monolayer chemistry creates a powerful new class of environmental sorbent materials called self-assembled monolayers on mesoporous supports (SAMMS). These SAMMS materials are highly efficient sorbents whose interfacial chemistry can be fine-tuned to selectively sequester a specific target species, such as heavy metals, tetrahedral oxometalate anions, and radionuclides. Details addressing the design, synthesis, and characterization of SAMMS materials specifically designed to sequester actinides, of central importance to the environmental cleanup necessary after 40 years of weapons-grade plutonium production, as well as evaluation of their binding affinities and kinetics are presented. PMID:15787373

  15. Self-assembling peptides and their potential applications in biomedicine.

    PubMed

    Rymer, Sarah-Jane; Tendler, Saul J B; Bosquillon, Cynthia; Washington, Clive; Roberts, Clive J

    2011-08-01

    For many years, peptides have been known to self-assemble to form nano- and micro-scale structures. Their nature of assembly and assembled morphology has since been investigated as this area of research has important implications for the development of both drug delivery and tissue regeneration. In this article, we explore the process of peptide self-assembly in vivo, and experiments that exploit the structures formed. Particular focus is directed towards diphenylalanine, the simplest self-assembling peptide, which generally forms tube-like structures on assembly. In addition, different peptides that may assemble into a range of other morphologies are highlighted and potential applications in regenerative medicine and drug delivery discussed. PMID:22826867

  16. Self-assembly and application of diphenylalanine-based nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Yan, Xuehai; Zhu, Pengli; Li, Junbai

    2010-06-01

    Micro- and nanostructures fabricated from biological building blocks have attracted tremendous attention owing to their potential for application in biology and in nanotechnology. Many biomolecules, including peptides and proteins, can interact and self-assemble into highly ordered supramolecular architectures with functionality. By imitating the processes where biological peptides or proteins are assembled in nature, one can delicately design and synthesize various peptide building blocks composed of several to dozens of amino acids for the creation of biomimetic or bioinspired nanostructured materials. This tutorial review aims to introduce a new kind of peptide building block, the diphenylalanine motif, extracted with inspiration of a pathogenic process towards molecular self-assembly. We highlight recent and current advances in fabrication and application of diphenylalanine-based peptide nanomaterials. We also highlight the preparation of such peptide-based nanostructures as nanotubes, spherical vesicles, nanofibrils, nanowires and hybrids through self-assembly, the improvement of their properties and the extension of their applications. PMID:20502791

  17. Self-Assembly of DNA-coated colloids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pine, David

    DNA-coated particles have emerged as a powerful tool for programming the self-assembly of colloids and nanoparticles. The power of this approach lies in the highly specific molecular recognition properties of DNA and in the thermal reversibility of the interactions between DNA strands attached to different particles. These two properties taken together can, in principle, direct the bottom-up self-assembly of different materials into almost any desired structure. Here we discuss the self-assembly of single and multi-component crystals of DNA-coated colloids. This work is supported by the Army Research Office under MURI Grant Award Number W911NF-10-1-0518 and the MRSEC Program of the NSF under Award Number DMR-1420073.

  18. Self-assembled liposomal nanoparticles in photodynamic therapy

    PubMed Central

    Sadasivam, Magesh; Avci, Pinar; Gupta, Gaurav K.; Lakshmanan, Shanmugamurthy; Chandran, Rakkiyappan; Huang, Ying-Ying; Kumar, Raj; Hamblin, Michael R.

    2013-01-01

    Photodynamic therapy (PDT) employs the combination of non-toxic photosensitizers (PS) together with harmless visible light of the appropriate wavelength to produce reactive oxygen species that kill unwanted cells. Because many PS are hydrophobic molecules prone to aggregation, numerous drug delivery vehicles have been tested to solubilize these molecules, render them biocompatible and enhance the ease of administration after intravenous injection. The recent rise in nanotechnology has markedly expanded the range of these nanoparticulate delivery vehicles beyond the well-established liposomes and micelles. Self-assembled nanoparticles are formed by judicious choice of monomer building blocks that spontaneously form a well-oriented 3-dimensional structure that incorporates the PS when subjected to the appropriate conditions. This self-assembly process is governed by a subtle interplay of forces on the molecular level. This review will cover the state of the art in the preparation and use of self-assembled liposomal nanoparticles within the context of PDT. PMID:24348377

  19. Multivalent Protein Assembly Using Monovalent Self-Assembling Building Blocks

    PubMed Central

    Petkau-Milroy, Katja; Sonntag, Michael H.; Colditz, Alexander; Brunsveld, Luc

    2013-01-01

    Discotic molecules, which self-assemble in water into columnar supramolecular polymers, emerged as an alternative platform for the organization of proteins. Here, a monovalent discotic decorated with one single biotin was synthesized to study the self-assembling multivalency of this system in regard to streptavidin. Next to tetravalent streptavidin, monovalent streptavidin was used to study the protein assembly along the supramolecular polymer in detail without the interference of cross-linking. Upon self-assembly of the monovalent biotinylated discotics, multivalent proteins can be assembled along the supramolecular polymer. The concentration of discotics, which influences the length of the final polymers at the same time dictates the amount of assembled proteins. PMID:24152447

  20. Guided and magnetic self-assembly of tunable magnetoceptive gels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tasoglu, S.; Yu, C. H.; Gungordu, H. I.; Guven, S.; Vural, T.; Demirci, U.

    2014-09-01

    Self-assembly of components into complex functional patterns at microscale is common in nature, and used increasingly in numerous disciplines such as optoelectronics, microfabrication, sensors, tissue engineering and computation. Here, we describe the use of stable radicals to guide the self-assembly of magnetically tunable gels, which we call ‘magnetoceptive’ materials at the scale of hundreds of microns to a millimeter, each can be programmed by shape and composition, into heterogeneous complex structures. Using paramagnetism of free radicals as a driving mechanism, complex heterogeneous structures are built in the magnetic field generated by permanent magnets. The overall magnetic signature of final structure is erased via an antioxidant vitamin E, subsequent to guided self-assembly. We demonstrate unique capabilities of radicals and antioxidants in fabrication of soft systems with heterogeneity in material properties, such as porosity, elastic modulus and mass density; then in bottom-up tissue engineering and finally, levitational and selective assembly of microcomponents.

  1. Equation of State for Phospholipid Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Marsh, Derek

    2016-01-01

    Phospholipid self-assembly is the basis of biomembrane stability. The entropy of transfer from water to self-assembled micelles of lysophosphatidylcholines and diacyl phosphatidylcholines with different chain lengths converges to a common value at a temperature of 44°C. The corresponding enthalpies of transfer converge at ∼-18°C. An equation of state for the free energy of self-assembly formulated from this thermodynamic data depends on the heat capacity of transfer as the sole parameter needed to specify a particular lipid. For lipids lacking calorimetric data, measurement of the critical micelle concentration at a single temperature suffices to define an effective heat capacity according to the model. Agreement with the experimental temperature dependence of the critical micelle concentration is then good. The predictive powers should extend also to amphiphile partitioning and the kinetics of lipid-monomer transfer. PMID:26745421

  2. Investigating collagen self-assembly with optical tweezers microrheology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forde, Nancy; Shayegan, Marjan; Altindal, Tuba

    Collagen is the fundamental structural protein in vertebrates. Assembled from individual triple-helical proteins to make strong fibres, collagen is a beautiful example of a hierarchical self-assembling system. Using optical tweezers to perform microrheology measurements, we explore the dynamics of interactions between collagens responsible for their self-assembly and examine the development of heterogeneous mechanics during assembly into fibrillar gels. Telopeptides, short non-helical regions that flank the triple helix, have long been known to facilitate fibril self-assembly. We find that their removal not only slows down fibril nucleation but also results in a significant frequency-dependent reduction in the elastic modulus of collagens in solution. We interpret these results in terms of a model in which telopeptides facilitate transient intermolecular interactions, which enhance network connectivity in solution and lead to more rapid assembly in fibril-forming conditions. Current address: Department of Physics, McGill University.

  3. Bioprinting synthetic self-assembling peptide hydrogels for biomedical applications.

    PubMed

    Loo, Yihua; Hauser, Charlotte A E

    2016-02-01

    Three-dimensional (3D) bioprinting is a disruptive technology for creating organotypic constructs for high-throughput screening and regenerative medicine. One major challenge is the lack of suitable bioinks. Short synthetic self-assembling peptides are ideal candidates. Several classes of peptides self-assemble into nanofibrous hydrogels resembling the native extracellular matrix. This is a conducive microenvironment for maintaining cell survival and physiological function. Many peptides also demonstrate stimuli-responsive gelation and tuneable mechanical properties, which facilitates extrusion before dispensing and maintains the shape fidelity of the printed construct in aqueous media. The inherent biocompatibility and biodegradability bodes well for in vivo applications as implantable tissues and drug delivery matrices, while their short length and ease of functionalization facilitates synthesis and customization. By applying self-assembling peptide inks to bioprinting, the dynamic complexity of biological tissue can be recreated, thereby advancing current biomedical applications of peptide hydrogel scaffolds. PMID:26694103

  4. Coarse-grained simulation of amphiphilic self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michel, David J.; Cleaver, Douglas J.

    2007-01-01

    The authors present a computer simulation study of amphiphilic self-assembly performed using a computationally efficient single-site model based on Gay-Berne [J. Chem. Phys. 74, 3316 (1981)] and Lennard-Jones particles. Molecular dynamics simulations of these systems show that free self-assembly of micellar, bilayer, and inverse micelle arrangements can be readily achieved for a single model parametrization. This self-assembly is predominantly driven by the anisotropy of the amphiphile-solvent interaction, amphiphile-amphiphile dispersive interactions being found to be of secondary importance. While amphiphile concentration is the main determinant of phase stability, molecular parameters such as head group size and interaction strength also have measurable affects on system properties.

  5. Coarse-grained simulation of amphiphilic self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Michel, David J; Cleaver, Douglas J

    2007-01-21

    The authors present a computer simulation study of amphiphilic self-assembly performed using a computationally efficient single-site model based on Gay-Berne [J. Chem. Phys. 74, 3316 (1981)] and Lennard-Jones particles. Molecular dynamics simulations of these systems show that free self-assembly of micellar, bilayer, and inverse micelle arrangements can be readily achieved for a single model parametrization. This self-assembly is predominantly driven by the anisotropy of the amphiphile-solvent interaction, amphiphile-amphiphile dispersive interactions being found to be of secondary importance. While amphiphile concentration is the main determinant of phase stability, molecular parameters such as head group size and interaction strength also have measurable affects on system properties. PMID:17249883

  6. Hierarchical self-assembly of chiral fibres from achiral particles

    PubMed Central

    Prybytak, P.; Frith, W. J.; Cleaver, D. J.

    2012-01-01

    We investigate, by molecular dynamics simulation, the behaviour of discotic particles in a solvent of Lennard-Jones spheres. When chromonic disc–sphere interactions are imposed on these systems, three regimes of self-assembly are observed. At moderate temperatures, numerous short threads of discs develop, but these threads remain isolated from one another. Quenching to low temperatures, alternatively, causes all of the discs to floc into a single extended aggregate which typically comprises several distinct sections and contains numerous packing defects. For a narrow temperature range between these regimes, however, defect-free chiral fibres are found to freely self-assemble. The spontaneous chirality of these fibres results from frustration between the hexagonal packing and interdigitation of neighbouring threads, the pitch being set by the particle shape. This demonstration of aggregate-wide chirality emerging owing to packing alone is pertinent to many biological and synthetic hierarchically self-assembling systems. PMID:24098850

  7. Bacteria Repellent Properties of Trichlorosilane Self-Assembled Graphene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bong, Jihye; Kim, Dae Hwan; Kim, Hyunsook; Lee, Sang-Seob; Ju, Sanghyun

    2013-12-01

    The bacteria repellent property and thermal stability of pristine graphene and graphene chemically modified with a trichlorosilane (HDF-S) self-assembled monolayer (SAM) were investigated. The contact angles of HDF-S self-assembled graphene (105.8±0.5°) improved by ˜30% compared with those of pristine graphene (79.4±0.9°). In a bacterial atmosphere, while the bacteria were able to migrate to the pristine graphene surface, they were not able to migrate to the surface of the HDF-S self-assembled graphene. Moreover, the HDF-S SAM on graphene showed stable hydrophobic properties from -40 to 500 °C.

  8. Guided and magnetic self-assembly of tunable magnetoceptive gels

    PubMed Central

    Tasoglu, S.; Yu, C.H.; Gungordu, H.I.; Guven, S.; Vural, T.; Demirci, U.

    2014-01-01

    Self-assembly of components into complex functional patterns at microscale is common in nature, and used increasingly in numerous disciplines such as optoelectronics, microfabrication, sensors, tissue engineering and computation. Here, we describe the use of stable radicals to guide the self-assembly of magnetically tunable gels, which we call ‘magnetoceptive’ materials at the scale of hundreds of microns to a millimeter, each can be programmed by shape and composition, into heterogeneous complex structures. Using paramagnetism of free radicals as a driving mechanism, complex heterogeneous structures are built in the magnetic field generated by permanent magnets. The overall magnetic signature of final structure is erased via an antioxidant vitamin E, subsequent to guided self-assembly. We demonstrate unique capabilities of radicals and antioxidants in fabrication of soft systems with heterogeneity in material properties, such as porosity, elastic modulus and mass density; then in bottom-up tissue engineering and finally, levitational and selective assembly of microcomponents. PMID:25175148

  9. Actinide Sequestration Using Self-Assembled Monolayers on Mesoporous Supports

    SciTech Connect

    Fryxell, Glen E.; Lin, Yuehe; Fiskum, Sandra K.; Birnbaum, Jerome C.; Wu, Hong; Kemner, K. M.; Kelly, Shelley

    2005-03-01

    Surfactant templated synthesis of mesoporous ceramics provides a versatile foundation upon which to create high efficiency environmental sorbents. These nanoporous ceramic oxides condense a huge amount of surface area into a very small volume. The ceramic oxide interface is receptive to surface functionalization through molecular self-assembly. The marriage of mesoporous ceramics with self-assembled monolayer chemistry creates a powerful new class of environmental sorbent materials called self-assembled monolayers on mesoporous supports (SAMMS). These SAMMS materials are highly efficient sorbents, whose interfacial chemistry can be fine-tuned to selectively sequester a specific target species, such as heavy metals, tetrahedral oxometallate anions and radionuclides. Details addressing the design, synthesis and characterization of SAMMS materials specifically designed to sequester actinides, of central importance to the environmental clean-up necessary after 40 years of weapons grade plutonium production, as well as evaluation of their binding affinities and kinetics are presented.

  10. Self-Assembled DNA Templated Nano-wires and Circuits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Braun, Erez

    2000-03-01

    The realization that conventional microelectronics is approaching its miniaturization limits has motivated the search for an alternative route based on self-assembled nanometer-scale electronics. We have recently proposed a new approach based on the hybridization of biological and electronic materials (Braun E., Eichen Y., Sivan U. and Ben-Yoseph G., Nature 391, 775 (1998)). The concept relies on a two-step self-assembly process. The inherent molecular recognition capabilities of DNA molecules are first utilized to construct a network that serves as a template for the subsequent assembly of electronic materials into a circuit. The utilization of DNA and its associated enzymatic machinery enables: (a) self-assembly of complex substrates, (b) specific molecular addresses for the localization of electronic materials (e.g., gold colloids) by standard molecular biology techniques, (c) interdevice wiring and (d) bridging the microscopic structures to the macroscopic world. The self-assembly of nanometer scale electronics relies on two complementary developments. First, the ability to convert DNA molecules into thin conductive wires and second, the self-assembly of complex extended DNA templates. Our progress in these two directions will be presented. Regarding the first issue, a physical process resulting in condensation of gold colloids onto DNA molecules enables the assembly of thin gold wires (around 100-200 A wide) having, in principle, unlimited extensions. The second issue is developed in the context of recombinant DNA which allows the self-assembly of precise molecular junctions and networks. Specifically, we use RecA protein, which is the main protein responsible for genetic recombination in E. Coli bacteria, to construct DNA junctions at pre-designed addresses (sequences) on the molecules. The integration of these processes allows advancing nanometer-scale electronics. A realistic fabrication scheme for a room-temperature single-electron transistor

  11. Probing peptide amphiphile self-assembly in blood serum.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Arijit; Buettner, Christian J; Manos, Aaron A; Wallace, Ashley J; Tweedle, Michael F; Goldberger, Joshua E

    2014-12-01

    There has been recent interest in designing smart diagnostic or therapeutic self-assembling peptide or polymeric materials that can selectively undergo morphological transitions to accumulate at a disease site in response to specific stimuli. Developing approaches to probe these self-assembly transitions in environments that accurately amalgamate the diverse plethora of proteins, biomolecules, and salts of blood is essential for creating systems that function in vivo. Here, we have developed a fluorescence anisotropy approach to probe the pH-dependent self-assembly transition of peptide amphiphile (PA) molecules that transform from spherical micelles at pH 7.4 to nanofibers under more acidic pH's in blood serum. By mixing small concentrations of a Ru(bipy)3(2+)-tagged PA with a Gd(DO3A)-tagged PA having the same lipid-peptide sequence, we showed that the pH dependence of self-assembly is minimally affected and can be monitored in mouse blood serum. These PA vehicles can be designed to transition from spherical micelles to nanofibers in the pH range 7.0-7.4 in pure serum. In contrast to the typical notion of serum albumin absorbing isolated surfactant molecules and disrupting self-assembly, our experiments showed that albumin does not bind these anionic PAs and instead promotes nanofibers due to a molecular crowding effect. Finally, we created a medium that replicates the transition pH in serum to within 0.08 pH units and allows probing self-assembly behavior using conventional spectroscopic techniques without conflicting protein signals, thus simplifying the development pathway from test tube to in vivo experimentation for stimuli-responsive materials. PMID:25347387

  12. Interfacial and mechanical properties of self-assembling systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carvajal, Daniel

    Self-assembly is a fascinating phenomena where interactions between small subunits allow them to aggregate and form complex structures that can span many length scales. These self-assembled structures are especially important in biology where they are necessary for life as we know it. This dissertation is a study of three very different self-assembling systems, all of which have important connections to biology and biological systems. Drop shape analysis was used to study the interfacial assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers at the oil/water interface. When biologically functionalyzed copolymers are used, this system can serve as a model for receptor-ligand interactions that are used by cells to perform many activities, such as interact with their surroundings. The physical properties of a self-assembling membrane system were quantified using membrane inflation and swelling experiments. These types of membranes may have important applications in medicine such as drug eluting (growth factor eluting) scaffolds to aid in wound healing. The factors affecting the properties of bis(leucine) oxalamide gels were also explored. We believe that this particular system will serve as an appropriate model for biological gels that are made up of fiber-like and/or rod-like structures. During the course of the research presented in this dissertation, many new techniques were developed specifically to allow/aid the study of these distinct self-assembling systems. For example, numerical methods were used to predict drop stability for drop shape analysis experiments and the methods used to create reproducibly create self-assembling membranes were developed specifically for this purpose. The development of these new techniques is an integral part of the thesis and should aid future students who work on these projects. A number ongoing projects and interesting research directions for each one of the projects is also presented.

  13. Controlled self-assembly of biomolecular rods on structured substrates.

    PubMed

    Moghimian, Pouya; Harnau, Ludger; Srot, Vesna; de la Peña, Francisco; Farahmand Bafi, Nima; Facey, Sandra J; van Aken, Peter A

    2016-04-01

    We report on the evaporative self-assembly and orientational ordering of semi-flexible spherocylindrical M13 phages on asymmetric stranded webs of thin amorphous carbon films. Although the phages were dispersed with a low concentration in the isotropic phase, the substrate edges induced nematic ordering and bending of the phages. As revealed by transmission electron microscopy, phages were aligned parallel to the curved substrate edges. This two-dimensional self-assembly on structured substrates opens a new route to the design of structures of orientationally ordered semi-flexible biomacromolecules. PMID:26917247

  14. Backfilled, self-assembled monolayers and methods of making same

    DOEpatents

    Fryxell, Glen E.; Zemanian, Thomas S.; Addleman, R. Shane; Aardahl, Christopher L.; Zheng, Feng; Busche, Brad; Egorov, Oleg B.

    2009-06-30

    Backfilled, self-assembled monolayers and methods of making the same are disclosed. The self-assembled monolayer comprises at least one functional organosilane species and a substantially random dispersion of at least one backfilling organosilane species among the functional organosilane species, wherein the functional and backfilling organosilane species have been sequentially deposited on a substrate. The method comprises depositing sequentially a first organosilane species followed by a backfilling organosilane species, and employing a relaxation agent before or during deposition of the backfilling organosilane species, wherein the first and backfilling organosilane species are substantially randomly dispersed on a substrate.

  15. Nano-engineering by optically directed self-assembly.

    SciTech Connect

    Furst, Eric; Dunn, Elissa; Park, Jin-Gyu; Brinker, C. Jeffrey; Sainis, Sunil; Merrill, Jason; Dufresne, Eric; Reichert, Matthew D.; Brotherton, Christopher M.; Bogart, Katherine Huderle Andersen; Molecke, Ryan A.; Koehler, Timothy P.; Bell, Nelson Simmons; Grillet, Anne Mary; Gorby, Allen D.; Singh, John; Lele, Pushkar; Mittal, Manish

    2009-09-01

    Lack of robust manufacturing capabilities have limited our ability to make tailored materials with useful optical and thermal properties. For example, traditional methods such as spontaneous self-assembly of spheres cannot generate the complex structures required to produce a full bandgap photonic crystals. The goal of this work was to develop and demonstrate novel methods of directed self-assembly of nanomaterials using optical and electric fields. To achieve this aim, our work employed laser tweezers, a technology that enables non-invasive optical manipulation of particles, from glass microspheres to gold nanoparticles. Laser tweezers were used to create ordered materials with either complex crystal structures or using aspherical building blocks.

  16. Structural simulations of nanomaterials self-assembled from ionic macrocycles.

    SciTech Connect

    van Swol, Frank B.; Medforth, Craig John

    2010-10-01

    Recent research at Sandia has discovered a new class of organic binary ionic solids with tunable optical, electronic, and photochemical properties. These nanomaterials, consisting of a novel class of organic binary ionic solids, are currently being developed at Sandia for applications in batteries, supercapacitors, and solar energy technologies. They are composed of self-assembled oligomeric arrays of very large anions and large cations, but their crucial internal arrangement is thus far unknown. This report describes (a) the development of a relevant model of nonconvex particles decorated with ions interacting through short-ranged Yukawa potentials, and (b) the results of initial Monte Carlo simulations of the self-assembly binary ionic solids.

  17. Self-assembly of flagellin on Au(111) surfaces.

    PubMed

    González Orive, Alejandro; Pissinis, Diego E; Diaz, Carolina; Miñán, Alejandro; Benítez, Guillermo A; Rubert, Aldo; Daza Millone, Antonieta; Rumbo, Martin; Hernández Creus, Alberto; Salvarezza, Roberto C; Schilardi, Patricia L

    2014-11-01

    The adsorption of flagellin monomers from Pseudomonas fluorescens on Au(111) has been studied by Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM), Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM), X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS), Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR), and electrochemical techniques. Results show that flagellin monomers spontaneously self-assemble forming a monolayer thick protein film bounded to the Au surface by the more hydrophobic subunit and exposed to the environment the hydrophilic subunit. The films are conductive and allow allocation of electrochemically active cytochrome C. The self-assembled films could be used as biological platforms to build 3D complex molecular structures on planar metal surfaces and to functionalize metal nanoparticles. PMID:25112916

  18. Synthesis and Functional Reconstitution of Light-Harvesting Complex II into Polymeric Membrane Architectures.

    PubMed

    Zapf, Thomas; Tan, Cherng-Wen Darren; Reinelt, Tobias; Huber, Christoph; Shaohua, Ding; Geifman-Shochat, Susana; Paulsen, Harald; Sinner, Eva-Kathrin

    2015-12-01

    One of most important processes in nature is the harvesting and dissipation of solar energy with the help of light-harvesting complex II (LHCII). This protein, along with its associated pigments, is the main solar-energy collector in higher plants. We aimed to generate stable, highly controllable, and sustainable polymer-based membrane systems containing LHCII-pigment complexes ready for light harvesting. LHCII was produced by cell-free protein synthesis based on wheat-germ extract, and the successful integration of LHCII and its pigments into different membrane architectures was monitored. The unidirectionality of LHCII insertion was investigated by protease digestion assays. Fluorescence measurements indicated chlorophyll integration in the presence of LHCII in spherical as well as planar bilayer architectures. Surface plasmon enhanced fluorescence spectroscopy (SPFS) was used to reveal energy transfer from chlorophyll b to chlorophyll a, which indicates native folding of the LHCII proteins. PMID:26473750

  19. Quantum coherent energy transfer over varying pathways in single light-harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Hildner, Richard; Brinks, Daan; Nieder, Jana B; Cogdell, Richard J; van Hulst, Niek F

    2013-06-21

    The initial steps of photosynthesis comprise the absorption of sunlight by pigment-protein antenna complexes followed by rapid and highly efficient funneling of excitation energy to a reaction center. In these transport processes, signatures of unexpectedly long-lived coherences have emerged in two-dimensional ensemble spectra of various light-harvesting complexes. Here, we demonstrate ultrafast quantum coherent energy transfer within individual antenna complexes of a purple bacterium under physiological conditions. We find that quantum coherences between electronically coupled energy eigenstates persist at least 400 femtoseconds and that distinct energy-transfer pathways that change with time can be identified in each complex. Our data suggest that long-lived quantum coherence renders energy transfer in photosynthetic systems robust in the presence of disorder, which is a prerequisite for efficient light harvesting. PMID:23788794

  20. ARCHITECTURE OF A CHARGE-TRANSFER STATE REGULATING LIGHT HARVESTING IN A PLANT ANTENNA PROTEIN

    SciTech Connect

    Fleming, Graham; Ahn, Tae Kyu; Avenson, Thomas J.; Ballottari, Matteo; Cheng, Yuan-Chung; Niyogi, Krishna K.; Bassi, Roberto; Fleming, Graham R.

    2008-04-02

    Energy-dependent quenching of excess absorbed light energy (qE) is a vital mechanism for regulating photosynthetic light harvesting in higher plants. All of the physiological characteristics of qE have been positively correlated with charge-transfer between coupled chlorophyll and zeaxanthin molecules in the light-harvesting antenna of photosystem II (PSII). In this work, we present evidence for charge-transfer quenching in all three of the individual minor antenna complexes of PSII (CP29, CP26, and CP24), and we conclude that charge-transfer quenching in CP29 involves a de-localized state of an excitonically coupled chlorophyll dimer. We propose that reversible conformational changes in CP29 can `tune? the electronic coupling between the chlorophylls in this dimer, thereby modulating the energy of the chlorophylls-zeaxanthin charge-transfer state and switching on and off the charge-transfer quenching during qE.

  1. Nature-inspired light-harvesting liquid crystalline porphyrins for organic photovoltaics

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Lanfang; Kang, Shin-Woong; Harden, John; Sun, Qingjiang; Zhou, Xiaoli; Dai, Liming; Jakli, Antal; Kumar, Satyendra; Li, Quan

    2008-12-22

    A new class of nanoscale light-harvesting discotic liquid crystalline porphyrins, with the same basic structure of the best photoreceptor in nature (chlorophyll), was synthesized. These materials can be exceptionally aligned into a highly ordered architecture in which the columns formed by intermolecular {pi}-{pi} stacking are spontaneously perpendicular to the substrate. The homeotropic alignment, well confirmed by synchrotron X-ray diffraction, could not only provide the most efficient pathway for hole conduction along the columnar axis crossing the device thickness, but also offer the largest area to the incident light for optimized light harvesting. Their preliminary photocurrent generation and photovoltaic performances were also demonstrated. The results provide new and efficient pathways to the development of organic photovoltaics by using homeotropically aligned liquid crystal thin films.

  2. Anti-Correlated Pigment Fluctuations of Allophycocyanin for Highly Efficient Photosynthetic Light Harvesting in Cyanobacteria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moran, Andrew; Nome, Rene; Scherer, Norbert

    2008-03-01

    The phycobiliprotein, allophycocyanin (APC), is an excellent model system for the study of light harvesting pigment interactions with a protein bath. This work investigates the relaxation of electronic excitations in APC with electric field-resolved transient grating and photon echo spectroscopies. Transient grating experiments observe a 35 fs internal conversion process between single exciton levels. Most importantly, our analysis shows that anti-correlated phycocyanobilin pigment energy level fluctuations cause the anti-diagonal orientation of the node in the measured dispersive photon echo spectrum. We believe this novel observation to reflect concerted protein bath fluctuations over the 2 nm length scale that separates the pigments. Consideration of the Forster energy transfer rate theory suggests that APC has evolved with this property to enhance its photosynthetic light harvesting efficiency.

  3. Quantitative investigations of quantum coherence for a light-harvesting protein at conditions simulating photosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Turner, Daniel B; Dinshaw, Rayomond; Lee, Kyung-Koo; Belsley, Michael S; Wilk, Krystyna E; Curmi, Paul M G; Scholes, Gregory D

    2012-04-14

    Recent measurements using two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy (2D ES) have shown that the initial dynamic response of photosynthetic proteins can involve quantum coherence. We show how electronic coherence can be differentiated from vibrational coherence in 2D ES. On that basis we conclude that both electronic and vibrational coherences are observed in the phycobiliprotein light-harvesting complex PC645 from Chroomonas sp. CCMP270 at ambient temperature. These light-harvesting antenna proteins of the cryptophyte algae are suspended in the lumen, where the pH drops significantly under sustained illumination by sunlight. Here we measured 2D ES of PC645 at increasing levels of acidity to determine if the change in pH affects the quantum coherence; quantitative analysis reveals that the dynamics are insensitive to the pH change. PMID:22374579

  4. Quantum coherence enabled determination of the energy landscape in light-harvesting complex II.

    PubMed

    Calhoun, Tessa R; Ginsberg, Naomi S; Schlau-Cohen, Gabriela S; Cheng, Yuan-Chung; Ballottari, Matteo; Bassi, Roberto; Fleming, Graham R

    2009-12-24

    The near-unity efficiency of energy transfer in photosynthesis makes photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes a promising avenue for developing new renewable energy technologies. Knowledge of the energy landscape of these complexes is essential in understanding their function, but its experimental determination has proven elusive. Here, the observation of quantum coherence using two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy is employed to directly measure the 14 lowest electronic energy levels in light-harvesting complex II (LHCII), the most abundant antenna complex in plants containing approximately 50% of the world's chlorophyll. We observe that the electronically excited states are relatively evenly distributed, highlighting an important design principle of photosynthetic complexes that explains the observed ultrafast intracomplex energy transfer in LHCII. PMID:20014871

  5. Modeling of fluorescence quenching by lutein in the plant light-harvesting complex LHCII.

    PubMed

    Duffy, C D P; Chmeliov, J; Macernis, M; Sulskus, J; Valkunas, L; Ruban, A V

    2013-09-26

    Photoprotective non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) in higher plants is the result of the formation of energy quenching traps in the light-harvesting antenna of photosystem II (PSII). It has been proposed that this quenching trap is a lutein molecule closely associated with the chlorophyll terminal emitter of the major light-harvesting complex LHCII. We have used a combination of time-dependent density functional theory (TD-DFT) and the semiempirical MNDO-CAS-CI method to model the chlorophyll-lutein energy transfer dynamics of the highly quenched crystal structure of LHCII. Our calculations reveal that the incoherent "hopping" of energy from Chla612 to the short-lived, dipole forbidden 2(1)A(g)(-) state of lutein620 accounts for the strong fluorescence quenching observed in these crystals. This adds weight to the argument that the same dissipative pathway is responsible for in vivo NPQ. PMID:23234311

  6. Excited state coherent dynamics in light-harvesting complexes from photosynthetic marine algae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richards, G. H.; Wilk, K. E.; Curmi, P. M. G.; Quiney, H. M.; Davis, J. A.

    2012-08-01

    We explore coherence dynamics in light-harvesting complexes and their interactions with other electronic states and vibrational modes. This is achieved by utilizing a two-colour four-wave mixing spectroscopy to excite and analyse a specific coherence pathway in the phycocyanin-645 (PC645) light-harvesting complex. We observe the dephasing rate increase as a function of temperature and oscillations in the signal intensity as a function of waiting time which reveals coherent excitation of pathways not directly resonant with the laser pulses. This coherent excitation of non-resonant electronic states implies strong coupling to phonon modes, which is necessary if coherent energy transfer between non-resonant states is to play any role in photosynthetic energy transfer.

  7. Single-molecule exploration of photoprotective mechanisms in light-harvesting complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Hsiang-Yu; Schlau-Cohen, Gabriela S.; Gwizdala, Michal; Krüger, Tjaart; Xu, Pengqi; Croce, Roberta; van Grondelle, Rienk; Moerner, W. E.

    2015-03-01

    Plants harvest sunlight by converting light energy to electron flow through the primary events in photosynthesis. One important question is how the light harvesting machinery adapts to fluctuating sunlight intensity. As a result of various regulatory processes, efficient light harvesting and photoprotection are balanced. Some of the biological steps in the photoprotective processes have been extensively studied and physiological regulatory factors have been identified. For example, the effect of lumen pH in changing carotenoid composition has been explored. However, the importance of photophysical dynamics in the initial light-harvesting steps and its relation to photoprotection remain poorly understood. Conformational and excited-state dynamics of multi-chromophore pigment-protein complexes are often difficult to study and limited information can be extracted from ensemble-averaged measurements. To address the problem, we use the Anti-Brownian ELectrokinetic (ABEL) trap to investigate the fluorescence from individual copies of light-harvesting complex II (LHCII), the primary antenna protein in higher plants, in a solution-phase environment. Perturbative surface immobilization or encapsulation schemes are avoided, and therefore the intrinsic dynamics and heterogeneity in the fluorescence of individual proteins are revealed. We perform simultaneous measurements of fluorescence intensity (brightness), excited-state lifetime, and emission spectrum of single trapped proteins. By analyzing the correlated changes between these observables, we identify forms of LHCII with different fluorescence intensities and excited-state lifetimes. The distinct forms may be associated with different energy dissipation mechanisms in the energy transfer chain. Changes of relative populations in response to pH and carotenoid composition are observed, which may extend our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of photoprotection.

  8. Light-Harvesting Nanotubes Formed by Supramolecular Assembly of Aromatic Oligophosphates.

    PubMed

    Bösch, Caroline D; Langenegger, Simon M; Häner, Robert

    2016-08-16

    A 2,7-disubstituted phosphodiester-linked phenanthrene trimer forms tubular structures in aqueous media. Chromophores are arranged in H-aggregates. Incorporation of small quantities of pyrene results in the development of light-harvesting nanotubes in which phenanthrenes act as antenna chromophores and pyrenes as energy acceptors. Energy collection is most efficient after excitation at the phenanthrene H-band. Fluorescence quantum yields up to 23 % are reached in pyrene doped, supramolecular nanotubes. PMID:27375116

  9. A thioredoxin-like/β-propeller protein maintains the efficiency of light harvesting in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Brooks, Matthew D.; Sylak-Glassman, Emily J.; Fleming, Graham R.; Niyogi, Krishna K.

    2013-01-01

    The light-harvesting complexes of plants have evolved the ability to switch between efficient light harvesting and quenching forms to optimize photosynthesis in response to the environment. Several distinct mechanisms, collectively termed “nonphotochemical quenching” (NPQ), provide flexibility in this response. Here we report the isolation and characterization of a mutant, suppressor of quenching 1 (soq1), that has high NPQ even in the absence of photosystem II subunit S (PsbS), a protein that is necessary for the rapidly reversible component of NPQ. The formation of NPQ in soq1 was light intensity-dependent, and it exhibited slow relaxation kinetics and other characteristics that distinguish it from known NPQ components. Treatment with chemical inhibitors or an uncoupler, as well as crosses to mutants known to affect other NPQ components, showed that the NPQ in soq1 does not require a transthylakoid pH gradient, zeaxanthin formation, or the phosphorylation of light-harvesting complexes, and it appears to be unrelated to the photosystem II damage-and-repair cycle. Measurements of pigments and chlorophyll fluorescence lifetimes indicated that the additional NPQ in soq1 is the result of a decrease in chlorophyll excited-state lifetime and not pigment bleaching. The SOQ1 gene was isolated by map-based cloning, and it encodes a previously uncharacterized thylakoid membrane protein with thioredoxin-like and β-propeller domains located in the lumen and a haloacid-dehalogenase domain exposed to the chloroplast stroma. We propose that the role of SOQ1 is to prevent formation of a slowly reversible form of antenna quenching, thereby maintaining the efficiency of light harvesting. PMID:23818601

  10. Atomistic mechanisms of rapid energy transport in light-harvesting molecules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohmura, Satoshi; Koga, Shiro; Akai, Ichiro; Shimojo, Fuyuki; Kalia, Rajiv K.; Nakano, Aiichiro; Vashishta, Priya

    2011-03-01

    Synthetic supermolecules such as π-conjugated light-harvesting dendrimers efficiently harvest energy from sunlight, which is of significant importance for the global energy problem. Key to their success is rapid transport of electronic excitation energy from peripheral antennas to photochemical reaction cores, the atomistic mechanisms of which remains elusive. Here, quantum-mechanical molecular dynamics simulation incorporating nonadiabatic electronic transitions reveals the key molecular motion that significantly accelerates the energy transport based on the Dexter mechanism.

  11. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; Southall, June; Cogdell, Richard J; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I; Scholes, Gregory D; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-01-01

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines the selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. We suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy. PMID:26857477

  12. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; Southall, June; Cogdell, Richard J.; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I.; Scholes, Gregory D.; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-02-01

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines the selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. We suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy.

  13. Light harvesting in photonic crystals revisited: why do slow photons at the blue edge enhance absorption?

    PubMed

    Deparis, O; Mouchet, S R; Su, B-L

    2015-11-11

    Light harvesting enhancement by slow photons in photonic crystal catalysts or dye-sensitized solar cells is a promising approach for increasing the efficiency of photoreactions. This structural effect is exploited in inverse opal TiO2 photocatalysts by tuning the red edge of the photonic band gap to the TiO2 electronic excitation band edge. In spite of many experimental demonstrations, the slow photon effect is not fully understood yet. In particular, observed enhancement by tuning the blue edge has remained unexplained. Based on rigorous couple wave analysis simulations, we quantify light harvesting enhancement in terms of absorption increase at a specific wavelength (monochromatic UV illumination) or photocurrent increase (solar light illumination), with respect to homogeneous flat slab of equivalent material thickness. We show that the commonly accepted explanation relying on light intensity confinement in high (low) dielectric constant regions at the red (blue) edge is challenged in the case of TiO2 inverse opals because of the sub-wavelength size of the material skeleton. The reason why slow photons at the blue edge are also able to enhance light harvesting is the loose confinement of the field, which leads to significant resonantly enhanced field intensity overlap with the skeleton in both red and blue edge tuning cases, yet with different intensity patterns. PMID:26517229

  14. Discrete Redox Signaling Pathways Regulate Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting and Chloroplast Gene Transcription

    PubMed Central

    Allen, John F.; Santabarbara, Stefano; Allen, Carol A.; Puthiyaveetil, Sujith

    2011-01-01

    In photosynthesis in chloroplasts, two related regulatory processes balance the actions of photosystems I and II. These processes are short-term, post-translational redistribution of light-harvesting capacity, and long-term adjustment of photosystem stoichiometry initiated by control of chloroplast DNA transcription. Both responses are initiated by changes in the redox state of the electron carrier, plastoquinone, which connects the two photosystems. Chloroplast Sensor Kinase (CSK) is a regulator of transcription of chloroplast genes for reaction centres of the two photosystems, and a sensor of plastoquinone redox state. We asked whether CSK is also involved in regulation of absorbed light energy distribution by phosphorylation of light-harvesting complex II (LHC II). Chloroplast thylakoid membranes isolated from a CSK T-DNA insertion mutant and from wild-type Arabidopsis thaliana exhibit similar light- and redox-induced 32P-labelling of LHC II and changes in 77 K chlorophyll fluorescence emission spectra, while room-temperature chlorophyll fluorescence emission transients from Arabidopsis leaves are perturbed by inactivation of CSK. The results indicate indirect, pleiotropic effects of reaction centre gene transcription on regulation of photosynthetic light-harvesting in vivo. A single, direct redox signal is transmitted separately to discrete transcriptional and post-translational branches of an integrated cytoplasmic regulatory system. PMID:22039472

  15. Directed assembly of hierarchical light-harvesting complexes using virus capsid scaffolds and DNA origami tiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Debin; Capehart, Stacy; Pal, Suchetan; Liu, Minghui; Lau, Jolene; Yan, Hao; Francis, Matthew; Deyoreo, Jim; LBNL Team; UCB Team; ASU Team

    2013-03-01

    Directed assembly of nanostructures with molecular precision is of great importance to develop an insightful understanding of assembly pathways and dynamics as well as to derive new functionalities. In this work, we explore the use of virus capsids and DNA origami tiles as 3D scaffolds and 2D templates for directed assembly of light-harvesting molecules and plasmonic gold nanoparticles to achieve tunable photoemission. Bacteriophage MS2 virus capsids with well-defined spherical macromolecular structures are genetically modified to provide predictable steric arrangements of light-harvesting molecules. DNA origami tiles act as programmable planar templates to provide higher-order organization of oligonucleotide-functionalized light-harvesting capsids and plasmonic gold nanoparticles. The direct observation of distance dependent photoluminescence emission is carried out by our correlative approach combining atomic force microscopy and confocal fluorescence microscopy, which is in good agreement with our numerical simulation and theoretical calculation. This work will facilitate the construction of multicomponent biological-metal hybrid plasmonic nanostructures for nanophotonics and biosensing applications.

  16. Two Cyanobacterial Photoreceptors Regulate Photosynthetic Light Harvesting by Sensing Teal, Green, Yellow, and Red Light

    PubMed Central

    Wiltbank, Lisa B.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The genomes of many photosynthetic and nonphotosynthetic bacteria encode numerous phytochrome superfamily photoreceptors whose functions and interactions are largely unknown. Cyanobacterial genomes encode particularly large numbers of phytochrome superfamily members called cyanobacteriochromes. These have diverse light color-sensing abilities, and their functions and interactions are just beginning to be understood. One of the best characterized of these functions is the regulation of photosynthetic light-harvesting antenna composition in the cyanobacterium Fremyella diplosiphon by the cyanobacteriochrome RcaE in response to red and green light, a process known as chromatic acclimation. We have identified a new cyanobacteriochrome named DpxA that maximally senses teal (absorption maximum, 494 nm) and yellow (absorption maximum, 568 nm) light and represses the accumulation of a key light-harvesting protein called phycoerythrin, which is also regulated by RcaE during chromatic acclimation. Like RcaE, DpxA is a two-component system kinase, although these two photoreceptors can influence phycoerythrin expression through different signaling pathways. The peak responsiveness of DpxA to teal and yellow light provides highly refined color discrimination in the green spectral region, which provides important wavelengths for photosynthetic light harvesting in cyanobacteria. These results redefine chromatic acclimation in cyanobacteria and demonstrate that cyanobacteriochromes can coordinately impart sophisticated light color sensing across the visible spectrum to regulate important photosynthetic acclimation processes. PMID:26861023

  17. Phycobilisome Mobility and Its Role in the Regulation of Light Harvesting in Red Algae.

    PubMed

    Kaňa, Radek; Kotabová, Eva; Lukeš, Martin; Papáček, Stěpán; Matonoha, Ctirad; Liu, Lu-Ning; Prášil, Ondřej; Mullineaux, Conrad W

    2014-06-19

    Red algae represent an evolutionarily important group that gave rise to the whole red clade of photosynthetic organisms. They contain a unique combination of light-harvesting systems represented by a membrane-bound antenna and by phycobilisomes situated on thylakoid membrane surfaces. So far, very little has been revealed about the mobility of their phycobilisomes and the regulation of their light-harvesting system in general. Therefore, we carried out a detailed analysis of phycobilisome dynamics in several red alga strains and compared these results with the presence (or absence) of photoprotective mechanisms. Our data conclusively prove phycobilisome mobility in two model mesophilic red alga strains, Porphyridium cruentum and Rhodella violacea. In contrast, there was almost no phycobilisome mobility in the thermophilic red alga Cyanidium caldarium that was not caused by a decrease in lipid desaturation in this extremophile. Experimental data attributed this immobility to the strong phycobilisome-photosystem interaction that highly restricted phycobilisome movement. Variations in phycobilisome mobility reflect the different ways in which light-harvesting antennae can be regulated in mesophilic and thermophilic red algae. Fluorescence changes attributed in cyanobacteria to state transitions were observed only in mesophilic P. cruentum with mobile phycobilisomes, and they were absent in the extremophilic C. caldarium with immobile phycobilisomes. We suggest that state transitions have an important regulatory function in mesophilic red algae; however, in thermophilic red algae, this process is replaced by nonphotochemical quenching. PMID:24948833

  18. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; Southall, June; Cogdell, Richard J.; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I.; Scholes, Gregory D.; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-02-09

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines themore » selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. In conclusion, we suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy.« less

  19. Direct evidence of quantum transport in photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Panitchayangkoon, Gitt; Voronine, Dmitri V; Abramavicius, Darius; Caram, Justin R; Lewis, Nicholas H C; Mukamel, Shaul; Engel, Gregory S

    2011-12-27

    The photosynthetic light-harvesting apparatus moves energy from absorbed photons to the reaction center with remarkable quantum efficiency. Recently, long-lived quantum coherence has been proposed to influence efficiency and robustness of photosynthetic energy transfer in light-harvesting antennae. The quantum aspect of these dynamics has generated great interest both because of the possibility for efficient long-range energy transfer and because biology is typically considered to operate entirely in the classical regime. Yet, experiments to date show only that coherence persists long enough that it can influence dynamics, but they have not directly shown that coherence does influence energy transfer. Here, we provide experimental evidence that interaction between the bacteriochlorophyll chromophores and the protein environment surrounding them not only prolongs quantum coherence, but also spawns reversible, oscillatory energy transfer among excited states. Using two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy, we observe oscillatory excited-state populations demonstrating that quantum transport of energy occurs in biological systems. The observed population oscillation suggests that these light-harvesting antennae trade energy reversibly between the protein and the chromophores. Resolving design principles evident in this biological antenna could provide inspiration for new solar energy applications. PMID:22167798

  20. Functional quantum dot-protein nano bio-assembly for superior light harvesting applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mutlugun, Evren; Ozgur Safak Seker, Urartu; Hernandez-Martinez, Pedro Ludwig; Sharma, Vijay Kumar; Lesnyak, Vladimir; Gaponik, Nikolai; Eychmuller, Alexander; Demir, Hilmi Volkan

    2013-03-01

    The formation of functional bio-assemblies is crucial for the advanced biophotonic applications. In this work, we formed a nano bio-assembly, consisting of green fluorescent protein (GFP) and inorganic quantum dots (QDs), to employ as an excitonic biofunctional composite to use for light harvesting and biosensing applications. Using QDs as donor molecules with the acceptor GFP in the formed bio-assembly, we observed up-to 15-fold enhancement on the GFP emission, mediated by the strong nonradiative energy transfer. The lifetime modifications of the donor-acceptor pair were studied as a function of the number of proteins per quantum dot, and in good agreement with the proposed theoretical model based on the excitonic interaction among the species. Apart from the light harvesting system, a biosensing medium was also established, facilitated by the enzymatic activity destructing the light harvesting complex. The energy transferring QD-GFP complex was controllably modified by the addition of trypsin, by destroying the bond in between the QD-GFP complex, as verified by the observation of lifetime modifications. In summary, we developed functional excitonic nano-bio-assemblies, which we believe will open up new possibilities for advanced biophotonic applications. The author contributed equally to this work

  1. Design principles of natural light-harvesting as revealed by single molecule spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krüger, T. P. J.; van Grondelle, R.

    2016-01-01

    Biology offers a boundless source of adaptation, innovation, and inspiration. A wide range of photosynthetic organisms exist that are capable of harvesting solar light in an exceptionally efficient way, using abundant and low-cost materials. These natural light-harvesting complexes consist of proteins that strongly bind a high density of chromophores to capture solar photons and rapidly transfer the excitation energy to the photochemical reaction centre. The amount of harvested light is also delicately tuned to the level of solar radiation to maintain a constant energy throughput at the reaction centre and avoid the accumulation of the products of charge separation. In this Review, recent developments in the understanding of light-harvesting by plants will be discussed, based on results obtained from single molecule spectroscopy studies. Three design principles of the main light-harvesting antenna of plants will be highlighted: (a) fine, photoactive control over the intrinsic protein disorder to efficiently use intrinsically available thermal energy dissipation mechanisms; (b) the design of the protein microenvironment of a low-energy chromophore dimer to control the amount of shade absorption; (c) the design of the exciton manifold to ensure efficient funneling of the harvested light to the terminal emitter cluster.

  2. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; Southall, June; Cogdell, Richard J.; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I.; Scholes, Gregory D.; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-01-01

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines the selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. We suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy. PMID:26857477

  3. Phycobilisome Mobility and Its Role in the Regulation of Light Harvesting in Red Algae1[W

    PubMed Central

    Kaňa, Radek; Kotabová, Eva; Lukeš, Martin; Papáček, Štěpán; Matonoha, Ctirad; Liu, Lu-Ning; Prášil, Ondřej; Mullineaux, Conrad W.

    2014-01-01

    Red algae represent an evolutionarily important group that gave rise to the whole red clade of photosynthetic organisms. They contain a unique combination of light-harvesting systems represented by a membrane-bound antenna and by phycobilisomes situated on thylakoid membrane surfaces. So far, very little has been revealed about the mobility of their phycobilisomes and the regulation of their light-harvesting system in general. Therefore, we carried out a detailed analysis of phycobilisome dynamics in several red alga strains and compared these results with the presence (or absence) of photoprotective mechanisms. Our data conclusively prove phycobilisome mobility in two model mesophilic red alga strains, Porphyridium cruentum and Rhodella violacea. In contrast, there was almost no phycobilisome mobility in the thermophilic red alga Cyanidium caldarium that was not caused by a decrease in lipid desaturation in this extremophile. Experimental data attributed this immobility to the strong phycobilisome-photosystem interaction that highly restricted phycobilisome movement. Variations in phycobilisome mobility reflect the different ways in which light-harvesting antennae can be regulated in mesophilic and thermophilic red algae. Fluorescence changes attributed in cyanobacteria to state transitions were observed only in mesophilic P. cruentum with mobile phycobilisomes, and they were absent in the extremophilic C. caldarium with immobile phycobilisomes. We suggest that state transitions have an important regulatory function in mesophilic red algae; however, in thermophilic red algae, this process is replaced by nonphotochemical quenching. PMID:24948833

  4. Efficient energy transfer in light-harvesting systems, I: optimal temperature, reorganization energy and spatial-temporal correlations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Jianlan; Liu, Fan; Shen, Young; Cao, Jianshu; Silbey, Robert J.

    2010-10-01

    Understanding the mechanisms of efficient and robust energy transfer in light-harvesting systems provides new insights for the optimal design of artificial systems. In this paper, we use the Fenna-Matthews-Olson (FMO) protein complex and phycocyanin 645 (PC 645) to explore the general dependence on physical parameters that help maximize the efficiency and maintain its stability. With the Haken-Strobl model, the maximal energy transfer efficiency (ETE) is achieved under an intermediate optimal value of dephasing rate. To avoid the infinite temperature assumption in the Haken-Strobl model and the failure of the Redfield equation in predicting the Forster rate behavior, we use the generalized Bloch-Redfield (GBR) equation approach to correctly describe dissipative exciton dynamics, and we find that maximal ETE can be achieved under various physical conditions, including temperature, reorganization energy and spatial-temporal correlations in noise. We also identify regimes of reorganization energy where the ETE changes monotonically with temperature or spatial correlation and therefore cannot be optimized with respect to these two variables.

  5. Synthesis of perylene-porphyrin building blocks and polymers thereof for the production of light-harvesting arrays

    DOEpatents

    Loewe, Robert S.; Tomizaki, Kin-ya; Lindsey, Jonathan S.

    2005-07-12

    The present invention provides methods, compounds, and compositions for the synthesis of light harvesting arrays, such arrays comprising: (a) a first substrate comprising a first electrode; and (b) a layer of light harvesting rods electrically coupled to said first electrode, each of said light harvesting rods comprising a polymer of Formula I: wherein m is at least 1; X.sup.1 is a charge separation group, and X.sup.2 through X.sup.m+1 are chromophores. At least one of X.sup.2 through X.sup.m+1 has at least one perylene group coupled thereto.

  6. Differential Self-Assembly of Novel Redox Crown Ethers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merithew, Andrew William

    Retinal prosthesis relies on the stimulation of living nerve tissue behind the rods and cones of the eye. The current state of the art relies on electrodes controlled by cameras which directly stimulate the nerve tissue to elicit a response to an image. These types of retinal implants have allowed for short-term crude vision in patients but have had limited long term success due to external battery packs and electroplating of the implanted electrodes. Ionic stimulation is one of the principle mechanisms that sensory neurons utilize in the generation of an action potential. In a complex transduction pathway, ionic gradients are constantly altered inside the neuron by voltage sensors or mechanically controlled gates embedded in the neuronal cell membrane; responsible for the open and close state of these ion channels. It has been demonstrated that local concentration increases of K + by direct injection proximal to the nerve can elicit nerve firing at a concentration of 15-20 mM (3-4X normal concentration) increase in K + concentration. As part of a larger concept of integrating biotechnology with nanofabrication, the materials for the development of potassium selective sequestration/storage and delivery were developed in the form of a redox-gated K+ selective crown ether. The structure of the anthraquinone-based crown was deduced by computational simulation and stoichiometry of the complex confirmed by mass spec. along with 2D diffusion NMR techniques. In this instance, the stoichiometry could be controlled by the addition of different salts to give a 1:1 complex with large, aromatic anions and a 2:1 complex with smaller anions such as triflate. The synthesis of the molecule was optimized by computational modeling and simulations of transport through an artificial membrane. The selectivity of the architecture developed was specific for K+ over Na+, the other major ionic species present in the blood. The mechanism influencing the self-assembly of this class of

  7. Cell differentiation on disk- and string-shaped hydrogels fabricated from Ca(2+) -responsive self-assembling peptides.

    PubMed

    Fukunaga, Kazuto; Tsutsumi, Hiroshi; Mihara, Hisakazu

    2016-11-01

    We recently developed a self-assembling peptide, E1Y9, that self-assembles into nanofibers and forms a hydrogel in the presence of Ca(2+) . E1Y9 derivatives conjugated with functional peptide sequences derived from extracellular matrices (ECMs) reportedly self-assemble into peptide nanofibers that enhance cell adhesion and differentiation. In this study, E1Y9/E1Y9-IKVAV-mixed hydrogels were constructed to serve as artificial ECMs that promote cell differentiation. E1Y9 and E1Y9-IKVAV co-assembled into networked nanofibers, and hydrogels with disk and string shapes were formed in response to Ca(2+) treatment. The neuronal differentiation of PC12 cells was facilitated on hydrogels of both shapes that contained the IKVAV motifs. Moreover, long neurites extended along the long axis of the string-shaped gel, suggesting that the structure of hydrogels of this shape can affect cellular orientation. Thus, E1Y9 hydrogels can potentially be used as artificial ECMs with desirable bioactivities and shapes that could be useful in tissue engineering applications. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Biopolymers (Pept Sci) 106: 476-483, 2016. PMID:26501895

  8. Self-assembly from milli- to nanoscales: methods and applications

    PubMed Central

    Mastrangeli, M; Abbasi, S; Varel, C; Van Hoof, C; Celis, J-P; Böhringer, K F

    2009-01-01

    The design and fabrication techniques for microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) and nanodevices are progressing rapidly. However, due to material and process flow incompatibilities in the fabrication of sensors, actuators and electronic circuitry, a final packaging step is often necessary to integrate all components of a heterogeneous microsystem on a common substrate. Robotic pick-and-place, although accurate and reliable at larger scales, is a serial process that downscales unfavorably due to stiction problems, fragility and sheer number of components. Self-assembly, on the other hand, is parallel and can be used for device sizes ranging from millimeters to nanometers. In this review, the state-of-the-art in methods and applications for self-assembly is reviewed. Methods for assembling three-dimensional (3D) MEMS structures out of two-dimensional (2D) ones are described. The use of capillary forces for folding 2D plates into 3D structures, as well as assembling parts onto a common substrate or aggregating parts to each other into 2D or 3D structures, is discussed. Shape matching and guided assembly by magnetic forces and electric fields are also reviewed. Finally, colloidal self-assembly and DNA-based self-assembly, mainly used at the nanoscale, are surveyed, and aspects of theoretical modeling of stochastic assembly processes are discussed. PMID:20209016

  9. Multistep hierarchical self-assembly of chiral nanopore arrays

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Hanim; Lee, Sunhee; Shin, Tae Joo; Korblova, Eva; Walba, David M.; Clark, Noel A.; Lee, Sang Bok; Yoon, Dong Ki

    2014-01-01

    A series of simple hierarchical self-assembly steps achieve self-organization from the centimeter to the subnanometer-length scales in the form of square-centimeter arrays of linear nanopores, each one having a single chiral helical nanofilament of large internal surface area and interfacial interactions based on chiral crystalline molecular arrangements. PMID:25246585

  10. Self-assembly of highly luminescent heteronuclear coordination cages.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Andrea; Hollering, Manuela; Han, Jiaying; Casini, Angela; Kühn, Fritz E

    2016-08-01

    Exo-functionalized Pd2L4 cage compounds with attached Ru(ii) pyridine complexes were prepared via coordination-driven self-assembly. Unlike most of the previously reported palladium(ii) cages, one of these metallocages exhibits an exceptionally high quantum yield of 66%. The presented approach is promising to obtain luminescent coordination complexes for various applications. PMID:27436541

  11. Soft self-assembled nanoparticles with temperature-dependent properties.

    PubMed

    Rovigatti, Lorenzo; Capone, Barbara; Likos, Christos N

    2016-02-14

    The fabrication of versatile building blocks that reliably self-assemble into desired ordered and disordered phases is amongst the hottest topics in contemporary materials science. To this end, microscopic units of varying complexity, aimed at assembling the target phases, have been thought, designed, investigated and built. Such a path usually requires laborious fabrication techniques, especially when specific functionalisation of the building blocks is required. Telechelic star polymers, i.e., star polymers made of a number of f di-block copolymers consisting of solvophobic and solvophilic monomers grafted on a central anchoring point, spontaneously self-assemble into soft patchy particles featuring attractive spots (patches) on the surface. Here we show that the tunability of such a system can be widely extended by controlling the physical and chemical parameters of the solution. Indeed, under fixed external conditions the self-assembly behaviour depends only on the number of arms and on the ratio of solvophobic to solvophilic monomers. However, changes in temperature and/or solvent quality make it possible to reliably change the number and size of the attractive patches. This allows the steering of the mesoscopic self-assembly behaviour without modifying the microscopic constituents. Interestingly, we also demonstrate that diverse combinations of the parameters can generate stars with the same number of patches but different radial and angular stiffness. This mechanism could provide a neat way of further fine-tuning the elastic properties of the supramolecular network without changing its topology. PMID:26467391

  12. pH-directed self-assembling helical peptide conformation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The beta-sheet and alpha-helix peptide conformation are two of the most fundamentally ordered secondary structures found in proteins and peptides. They also give rise to self-assembling motifs that form macromolecular channels and nanostructures. Through design these conformations can yield enhance...

  13. Surface dispersion and hardening of self-assembled diacetylene nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Lee, Sang Beom; Koepsel, Richard R; Russell, Alan J

    2005-11-01

    We describe here the first method for dispersion of individual self-assembled diacetylene nanotubes on surfaces. Complete polymerization by UV exposure was achieved as demonstrated by nanotubes that were resistant to aggressive organic solvents and temperatures well above the melting point of the monomer. The polymerized tubes displayed reversible thermochromic and mechanochromic properties. PMID:16277453

  14. An exactly solvable model of hierarchical self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dudowicz, Jacek; Douglas, Jack F.; Freed, Karl F.

    2009-06-01

    Many living and nonliving structures in the natural world form by hierarchical organization, but physical theories that describe this type of organization are scarce. To address this problem, a model of equilibrium self-assembly is formulated in which dynamically associating species organize into hierarchical structures that preserve their shape at each stage of assembly. In particular, we consider symmetric m-gons that associate at their vertices into Sierpinski gasket structures involving the hierarchical association of triangles, squares, hexagons, etc., at their corner vertices, thereby leading to fractal structures after many generations of assembly. This rather idealized model of hierarchical assembly yields an infinite sequence of self-assembly transitions as the morphology progressively organizes to higher levels of the hierarchy, and these structures coexists at dynamic equilibrium, as found in real hierarchically self-assembling systems such as amyloid fiber forming proteins. Moreover, the transition sharpness progressively grows with increasing m, corresponding to larger and larger loops in the assembled structures. Calculations are provided for several basic thermodynamic properties (including the order parameters for assembly for each stage of the hierarchy, average mass of clusters, specific heat, transition sharpness, etc.) that are required for characterizing the interaction parameters governing this type of self-assembly and for elucidating other basic qualitative aspects of these systems. Our idealized model of hierarchical assembly gives many insights into this ubiquitous type of self-organization process.

  15. Nano-imaging enabled via self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    McLeod, Euan; Ozcan, Aydogan

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Imaging object details with length scales below approximately 200 nm has been historically difficult for conventional microscope objective lenses because of their inability to resolve features smaller than one-half the optical wavelength. Here we review some of the recent approaches to surpass this limit by harnessing self-assembly as a fabrication mechanism. Self-assembly can be used to form individual nano- and micro-lenses, as well as to form extended arrays of such lenses. These lenses have been shown to enable imaging with resolutions as small as 50 nm half-pitch using visible light, which is well below the Abbe diffraction limit. Furthermore, self-assembled nano-lenses can be used to boost contrast and signal levels from small nano-particles, enabling them to be detected relative to background noise. Finally, alternative nano-imaging applications of self-assembly are discussed, including three-dimensional imaging, enhanced coupling from light-emitting diodes, and the fabrication of contrast agents such as quantum dots and nanoparticles. PMID:25506387

  16. Self-Assembly of Globular Protein-Polymer Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, C. S.; Olsen, B. D.

    2011-03-01

    The self-assembly of globular protein-polymer diblock copolymers into nanostructured phases is demonstrated as an elegant and simple method for structural control in biocatalysis or bioelectronics. In order to fundamentally investigate self-assembly in these complex block copolymer systems, a red fluorescent protein was expressed in E. coli and site-specifically conjugated to a low polydispersity poly(N-isopropyl acrylamide) (PNIPAM) block using thiol-maleimide coupling to form a well-defined model globular protein-polymer diblock. Functional protein materials are obtained by solvent evaporation and solvent annealing above and below the lower critical solution temperature of PNIPAM in order to access different pathways toward self-assembly. Small angle x-ray scattering and microscopy are used to show that the diblock forms lamellar nanostructures and to explore dependence of nanostructure formation on processing conditions. Circular dichroism and UV-vis show that a large fraction of the protein remains in its folded state after conjugation, and wide angle x-ray scattering demonstrates that diblock copolymer self-assembly changes the protein packing symmetry.

  17. Soft self-assembled nanoparticles with temperature-dependent properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rovigatti, Lorenzo; Capone, Barbara; Likos, Christos N.

    2016-02-01

    The fabrication of versatile building blocks that reliably self-assemble into desired ordered and disordered phases is amongst the hottest topics in contemporary materials science. To this end, microscopic units of varying complexity, aimed at assembling the target phases, have been thought, designed, investigated and built. Such a path usually requires laborious fabrication techniques, especially when specific functionalisation of the building blocks is required. Telechelic star polymers, i.e., star polymers made of a number of f di-block copolymers consisting of solvophobic and solvophilic monomers grafted on a central anchoring point, spontaneously self-assemble into soft patchy particles featuring attractive spots (patches) on the surface. Here we show that the tunability of such a system can be widely extended by controlling the physical and chemical parameters of the solution. Indeed, under fixed external conditions the self-assembly behaviour depends only on the number of arms and on the ratio of solvophobic to solvophilic monomers. However, changes in temperature and/or solvent quality make it possible to reliably change the number and size of the attractive patches. This allows the steering of the mesoscopic self-assembly behaviour without modifying the microscopic constituents. Interestingly, we also demonstrate that diverse combinations of the parameters can generate stars with the same number of patches but different radial and angular stiffness. This mechanism could provide a neat way of further fine-tuning the elastic properties of the supramolecular network without changing its topology.

  18. Self-assembly of supramolecular chiral insulated molecular wire.

    PubMed

    Li, Chun; Numata, Munenori; Bae, Ah-Hyun; Sakurai, Kazuo; Shinkai, Seiji

    2005-04-01

    Supramolecular chiral insulated molecular wire was constructed by self-assembly of a neutral one-dimensional schizophyllan host and a water-soluble polythiophene guest. The work presented here will not only open a door to a new application of polysaccharides but also provide an important clue to prepare stable supramolecular insulated molecular wires with one-handed helical structure. PMID:15796500

  19. Self-assembling biomolecular catalysts for hydrogen production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jordan, Paul C.; Patterson, Dustin P.; Saboda, Kendall N.; Edwards, Ethan J.; Miettinen, Heini M.; Basu, Gautam; Thielges, Megan C.; Douglas, Trevor

    2016-02-01

    The chemistry of highly evolved protein-based compartments has inspired the design of new catalytically active materials that self-assemble from biological components. A frontier of this biodesign is the potential to contribute new catalytic systems for the production of sustainable fuels, such as hydrogen. Here, we show the encapsulation and protection of an active hydrogen-producing and oxygen-tolerant [NiFe]-hydrogenase, sequestered within the capsid of the bacteriophage P22 through directed self-assembly. We co-opted Escherichia coli for biomolecular synthesis and assembly of this nanomaterial by expressing and maturing the EcHyd-1 hydrogenase prior to expression of the P22 coat protein, which subsequently self assembles. By probing the infrared spectroscopic signatures and catalytic activity of the engineered material, we demonstrate that the capsid provides stability and protection to the hydrogenase cargo. These results illustrate how combining biological function with directed supramolecular self-assembly can be used to create new materials for sustainable catalysis.

  20. Hierarchical self-assembly of complex polyhedral microcontainers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Filipiak, David J.; Azam, Anum; Leong, Timothy G.; Gracias, David H.

    2009-07-01

    The concept of self-assembly of a two-dimensional (2D) template to a three-dimensional (3D) structure has been suggested as a strategy to enable highly parallel fabrication of complex, patterned microstructures. We have previously studied the surface-tension-based self-assembly of patterned, microscale polyhedral containers (cubes, square pyramids and tetrahedral frusta). In this paper, we describe the observed hierarchical self-assembly of more complex, patterned polyhedral containers in the form of regular dodecahedra and octahedra. The hierarchical design methodology, combined with the use of self-correction mechanisms, was found to greatly reduce the propagation of self-assembly error that occurs in these more complex systems. It is a highly effective way to mass-produce patterned, complex 3D structures on the microscale and could also facilitate encapsulation of cargo in a parallel and cost-effective manner. Furthermore, the behavior that we have observed may be useful in the assembly of complex systems with large numbers of components.

  1. Chemical reaction mediated self-assembly of PTCDA into nanofibers.

    PubMed

    Sayyad, Arshad S; Balakrishnan, Kaushik; Ajayan, Pulickel M

    2011-09-01

    Uniform and crystalline nanofibers of perylene-3,4,9,10-tetracarboxylic dianhydride (PTCDA), an insoluble organic semiconducting molecule, have been achieved by self-assembling the molecules using chemical reaction mediated conversion of an appropriately designed soluble precursor, perylene tetracarboxylic acid (PTCA) using carbodiimide chemistry. PMID:21814688

  2. Molecular gated transistors: Role of self-assembled monolayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaya, O.; Halpern, E.; Khamaisi, B.; Shaked, M.; Usherenko, Y.; Shalev, G.; Doron, A.; Levy, I.; Rosenwaks, Y.

    2010-07-01

    In order to understand the biosensing mechanism of field-effect based biosensors and optimize their performance, the effect of each of its molecular building block must be understood. In this work the gating effect of self-assembled linker molecules on field-effect transistor was studied in detail. We have combined Kelvin probe force microscopy, current-voltage measurements, capacitance-voltage measurements, equivalent circuit modeling and device simulations in order to trace the mechanism of silicon-on-insulator biological field-effect transistors. The measurements were conducted on the widely used linker molecules (3-aminopropyl)-trimethoxysilane (APTMS) and 11-aminoundecyl-triethoxysilane (AUTES), which were self-assembled on ozone activated silicon oxide surface covering the transistor channel. In a dry environment, the work function of the modified silicon oxide decreased by more than 1.5 eV, and the transistor threshold voltage increased by about 30 V following the self-assembly. A detailed analysis indicates that these changes are due to negative induced charges on the top dielectric layer, and an effective dipole due to the polar monolayer. However, the self-assembly did not change the silicon flat-band voltage when in contact with an electrolyte. This is attributed to electrostatic screening by the electrolyte.

  3. Amphiphilic self-assembly of alkanols in protic ionic liquids.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Haihui Joy; FitzGerald, Paul A; Dolan, Andrew; Atkin, Rob; Warr, Gregory G

    2014-08-21

    Strong cohesive forces in protic ionic liquids (PILs) can induce a liquid nanostructure consisting of segregated polar and apolar domains. Small-angle X-ray scattering has shown that these forces can also induce medium chain length n-alkanols to self-assemble into micelle- and microemulsion-like structures in ethylammonium (EA(+)) and propylammonium (PA(+)) PILs, in contrast to their immiscibility with both water and ethanolammonium (EtA(+)) PILs. These binary mixtures are structured on two distinct length scales: one associated with the self-assembled n-alkanol aggregates and the other with the underlying liquid nanostructure. This suggests that EA(+) and PA(+) enable n-alkanol aggregation by acting as cosurfactants, which EtA(+) cannot do because its terminating hydroxyl renders the cation nonamphiphilic. The primary determining factor for miscibility and self-assembly is the ratio of alkyl chain lengths of the alkanol and PIL cation, modulated by the anion type. These results show how ILs can support the self-assembly of nontraditional amphiphiles and enable the creation of new forms of soft matter. PMID:25068766

  4. Computer simulations of block copolymer tethered nanoparticle self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chan, Elaine R.; Ho, Lin C.; Glotzer, Sharon C.

    2006-08-01

    We perform molecular simulations to study the self-assembly of block copolymer tethered cubic nanoparticles. Minimal models of the tethered nanoscale building blocks (NBBs) are utilized to explore the structures arising from self-assembly. We demonstrate that attaching a rigid nanocube to a diblock copolymer affects the typical equilibrium morphologies exhibited by the pure copolymer. Lamellar and cylindrical phases are observed in both systems but not at the corresponding relative copolymer tether block fractions. The effect of nanoparticle geometry on phase behavior is investigated by comparing the self-assembled structures formed by the tethered NBBs with those of their linear ABC triblock copolymer counterparts. The tethered nanocubes exhibit the conventional triblock copolymer lamellar and cylindrical phases when the repulsive interactions between different blocks are symmetric. The rigid and bulky nature of the cube induces interfacial curvature in the tethered NBB phases compared to their linear ABC triblock copolymer counterparts. We compare our results with those structures obtained from ABC diblock copolymer tethered nanospheres to further elucidate the role of cubic nanoparticle geometry on self-assembly.

  5. Cooperative Self-Assembly of Peptide Gelators and Proteins

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Molecular self-assembly provides a versatile route for the production of nanoscale materials for medical and technological applications. Herein, we demonstrate that the cooperative self-assembly of amphiphilic small molecules and proteins can have drastic effects on supramolecular nanostructuring of resulting materials. We report that mesoscale, fractal-like clusters of proteins form at concentrations that are orders of magnitude lower compared to those usually associated with molecular crowding at room temperature. These protein clusters have pronounced effects on the molecular self-assembly of aromatic peptide amphiphiles (fluorenylmethoxycarbonyl- dipeptides), resulting in a reversal of chiral organization and enhanced order through templating and binding. Moreover, the morphological and mechanical properties of the resultant nanostructured gels can be controlled by the cooperative self-assembly of peptides and protein fractal clusters, having implications for biomedical applications where proteins and peptides are both present. In addition, fundamental insights into cooperative interplay of molecular interactions and confinement by clusters of chiral macromolecules is relevant to gaining understanding of the molecular mechanisms of relevance to the origin of life and development of synthetic mimics of living systems. PMID:24256076

  6. Real-time tracking of superparamagnetic nanoparticle self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Siffalovic, P; Majkova, E; Chitu, L; Jergel, M; Luby, S; Capek, I; Satka, A; Timmann, A; Roth, S V

    2008-12-01

    The spontaneous self-assembly process of superparamagnetic nanoparticles in a fast-drying colloidal drop is observed in real time. The grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS) technique is employed for an in situ tracking of the reciprocal space, with a 3 ms delay time between subsequent frames delivered by a new generation of X-ray cameras. A focused synchrotron beam and sophisticated sample oscillations make it possible to relate the dynamic reciprocal to direct space features and to localize the self-assembly. In particular, no nanoparticle ordering is found inside the evaporating drop and near-surface region down to a drop thickness of 90 microm. Scanning through the shrinking drop-contact line indicates the start of self-assembly near the drop three-phase interface, in accord with theoretical predictions. The results obtained have direct implications for establishing the self-assembly process as a routine technological step in the preparation of new nanostructures. PMID:19003821

  7. Directed intermixing in multi-component self-assembling biomaterials

    PubMed Central

    Gasiorowski, Joshua Z.; Collier, Joel H.

    2011-01-01

    The non-covalent co-assembly of multiple different peptides can be a useful route for producing multifunctional biomaterials. However, to date such materials have almost exclusively been investigated as homogeneous self-assemblies, having functional components uniformly distributed throughout their supramolecular structures. Here we illustrate control over the intermixing of multiple different self-assembling peptides, in turn providing a simple but powerful means for modulating these materials’ mechanical and biological properties. In beta-sheet fibrillizing hydrogels, significant increases in stiffening could be achieved using heterobifunctional cross-linkers by sequestering peptides bearing different reactive groups into distinct populations of fibrils, thus favoring inter-fibril cross-linking. Further, by specifying the intermixing of RGD-bearing peptides in 2-D and 3-D self-assemblies, the growth of HUVECs and NIH 3T3 cells could be significantly modulated. This approach may be immediately applicable towards a wide variety of self-assembling systems that form stable supramolecular structures. PMID:21863894

  8. Self-assembly of Superparamagnetic Nanoparticles with Permanent Magnetization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghosh, Suvojit; Puri, Ishwar

    2012-02-01

    Magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) exhibit superparamagnetism when thermal fluctuations overcome the potential barrier for spin reversal set by magnetocrystalline anisotropy. The magnetic moment in such a material oscillates between the easy axes leading to zero net magnetization. Stable colloidal dispersions of MNPs exploit this state to prevent agglomeration. Self-assembly of MNPs presents an excellent bottom up nanofabrication technique due to the wide range of structures that can be formed. A stable dispersion of MNPs is an essential starting point for good control of the process. In this study we explore the theoretical basis for a self-assembled MNP structure with permanent magnetization starting from a dispersion of superparamangetic MNPs. Magnetostatic coupling of dipole moments enhance the potential barrier for magnetization reversals. We use X-Ray microCT and TEM to visualize the self-assembled structures. We use a stochastic form of the Landau-Lifshitz-Gilbert equation to simulate the magnetization dynamics in each MNP. Permanent magnetization in self-assembled structures generated in situ promise several significant applications such as targeted drug delivery, tissue engineering and novel soft composites.

  9. Self-assembled peptide nanostructures for functional materials.

    PubMed

    Ekiz, Melis Sardan; Cinar, Goksu; Khalily, Mohammad Aref; Guler, Mustafa O

    2016-10-01

    Nature is an important inspirational source for scientists, and presents complex and elegant examples of adaptive and intelligent systems created by self-assembly. Significant effort has been devoted to understanding these sophisticated systems. The self-assembly process enables us to create supramolecular nanostructures with high order and complexity, and peptide-based self-assembling building blocks can serve as suitable platforms to construct nanostructures showing diverse features and applications. In this review, peptide-based supramolecular assemblies will be discussed in terms of their synthesis, design, characterization and application. Peptide nanostructures are categorized based on their chemical and physical properties and will be examined by rationalizing the influence of peptide design on the resulting morphology and the methods employed to characterize these high order complex systems. Moreover, the application of self-assembled peptide nanomaterials as functional materials in information technologies and environmental sciences will be reviewed by providing examples from recently published high-impact studies. PMID:27578525

  10. Towards lysozyme nanotube and 3D hybrid self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lara, Cecile; Handschin, Stephan; Mezzenga, Raffaele

    2013-07-01

    We report lysozyme self-assembly into nanotubes, under the effect of hydrolysis at pH 2 and 90 °C. We resolve the final steps of the fibrillation pathway, entailing the closure of multi-stranded helical ribbons into nanotubes, and we provide evidence of β-sheet arrangement within the nanotubes, demonstrating amyloid-like aggregation. Addition of chloroauric acid to the self-assembled structures can lead to generation of either gold single crystal nanoplatelets or gold nanoparticles (when a reducing agent is added) decorating the nanotube and ribbon surfaces. The crystal-based organic-inorganic hybrids further assemble into 3D ``sandwiched'' structures.We report lysozyme self-assembly into nanotubes, under the effect of hydrolysis at pH 2 and 90 °C. We resolve the final steps of the fibrillation pathway, entailing the closure of multi-stranded helical ribbons into nanotubes, and we provide evidence of β-sheet arrangement within the nanotubes, demonstrating amyloid-like aggregation. Addition of chloroauric acid to the self-assembled structures can lead to generation of either gold single crystal nanoplatelets or gold nanoparticles (when a reducing agent is added) decorating the nanotube and ribbon surfaces. The crystal-based organic-inorganic hybrids further assemble into 3D ``sandwiched'' structures. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: Materials and methods, further images and FTIR data. See DOI: 10.1039/c3nr02194g

  11. Probabilistic Analysis of Pattern Formation in Monotonic Self-Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Tyler G.; Garzon, Max H.; Deaton, Russell J.

    2015-01-01

    Inspired by biological systems, self-assembly aims to construct complex structures. It functions through piece-wise, local interactions among component parts and has the potential to produce novel materials and devices at the nanoscale. Algorithmic self-assembly models the product of self-assembly as the output of some computational process, and attempts to control the process of assembly algorithmically. Though providing fundamental insights, these computational models have yet to fully account for the randomness that is inherent in experimental realizations, which tend to be based on trial and error methods. In order to develop a method of analysis that addresses experimental parameters, such as error and yield, this work focuses on the capability of assembly systems to produce a pre-determined set of target patterns, either accurately or perhaps only approximately. Self-assembly systems that assemble patterns that are similar to the targets in a significant percentage are “strong” assemblers. In addition, assemblers should predominantly produce target patterns, with a small percentage of errors or junk. These definitions approximate notions of yield and purity in chemistry and manufacturing. By combining these definitions, a criterion for efficient assembly is developed that can be used to compare the ability of different assembly systems to produce a given target set. Efficiency is a composite measure of the accuracy and purity of an assembler. Typical examples in algorithmic assembly are assessed in the context of these metrics. In addition to validating the method, they also provide some insight that might be used to guide experimentation. Finally, some general results are established that, for efficient assembly, imply that every target pattern is guaranteed to be assembled with a minimum common positive probability, regardless of its size, and that a trichotomy exists to characterize the global behavior of typical efficient, monotonic self-assembly

  12. Probabilistic Analysis of Pattern Formation in Monotonic Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Moore, Tyler G; Garzon, Max H; Deaton, Russell J

    2015-01-01

    Inspired by biological systems, self-assembly aims to construct complex structures. It functions through piece-wise, local interactions among component parts and has the potential to produce novel materials and devices at the nanoscale. Algorithmic self-assembly models the product of self-assembly as the output of some computational process, and attempts to control the process of assembly algorithmically. Though providing fundamental insights, these computational models have yet to fully account for the randomness that is inherent in experimental realizations, which tend to be based on trial and error methods. In order to develop a method of analysis that addresses experimental parameters, such as error and yield, this work focuses on the capability of assembly systems to produce a pre-determined set of target patterns, either accurately or perhaps only approximately. Self-assembly systems that assemble patterns that are similar to the targets in a significant percentage are "strong" assemblers. In addition, assemblers should predominantly produce target patterns, with a small percentage of errors or junk. These definitions approximate notions of yield and purity in chemistry and manufacturing. By combining these definitions, a criterion for efficient assembly is developed that can be used to compare the ability of different assembly systems to produce a given target set. Efficiency is a composite measure of the accuracy and purity of an assembler. Typical examples in algorithmic assembly are assessed in the context of these metrics. In addition to validating the method, they also provide some insight that might be used to guide experimentation. Finally, some general results are established that, for efficient assembly, imply that every target pattern is guaranteed to be assembled with a minimum common positive probability, regardless of its size, and that a trichotomy exists to characterize the global behavior of typical efficient, monotonic self-assembly systems

  13. Flexible Fabrication of Shape-Controlled Collagen Building Blocks for Self-Assembly of 3D Microtissues.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xu; Meng, Zhaoxu; Ma, Jingyun; Shi, Yang; Xu, Hui; Lykkemark, Simon; Qin, Jianhua

    2015-08-12

    Creating artificial tissue-like structures that possess the functionality, specificity, and architecture of native tissues remains a big challenge. A new and straightforward strategy for generating shape-controlled collagen building blocks with a well-defined architecture is presented, which can be used for self-assembly of complex 3D microtissues. Collagen blocks with tunable geometries are controllably produced and released via a membrane-templated microdevice. The formation of functional microtissues by embedding tissue-specific cells into collagen blocks with expression of specific proteins is described. The spontaneous self-assembly of cell-laden collagen blocks into organized tissue constructs with predetermined configurations is demonstrated, which are largely driven by the synergistic effects of cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions. This new strategy would open up new avenues for the study of tissue/organ morphogenesis, and tissue engineering applications. PMID:25920010

  14. Hierarchical self-assembly: Self-organized nanostructures in a nematically ordered matrix of self-assembled polymeric chains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mubeena, Shaikh; Chatterji, Apratim

    2015-03-01

    We report many different nanostructures which are formed when model nanoparticles of different sizes (diameter σn) are allowed to aggregate in a background matrix of semiflexible self-assembled polymeric wormlike micellar chains. The different nanostructures are formed by the dynamical arrest of phase-separating mixtures of micellar monomers and nanoparticles. The different morphologies obtained are the result of an interplay of the available free volume, the elastic energy of deformation of polymers, the density (chemical potential) of the nanoparticles in the polymer matrix, and, of course, the ratio of the size of self-assembling nanoparticles and self-avoidance diameter of polymeric chains. We have used a hybrid semi-grand-canonical Monte Carlo simulation scheme to obtain the (nonequilibrium) phase diagram of the self-assembled nanostructures. We observe rodlike structures of nanoparticles which get self-assembled in the gaps between the nematically ordered chains, as well as percolating gel-like network of conjoined nanotubes. We also find a totally unexpected interlocked crystalline phase of nanoparticles and monomers, in which each crystal plane of nanoparticles is separated by planes of perfectly organized polymer chains. We identified the condition which leads to such interlocked crystal structure. We suggest experimental possibilities of how the results presented in this paper could be used to obtain different nanostructures in the laboratory.

  15. Self-assembly of [Et,Et]-bacteriochlorophyll cF on highly oriented pyrolytic graphite revealed by scanning tunneling microscopy.

    PubMed

    Möltgen, H; Kleinermanns, K; Jesorka, A; Schaffner, K; Holzwarth, A R

    2002-06-01

    The chlorosomal light-harvesting antennae of green phototrophic bacteria consist of large supramolecular aggregates of bacteriochlorophyll c (BChl c). The supramolecular structure of (3(1)-R/S)-BChl c on highly oriented pyrolytic graphite (HOPG) and molybdenum disulfide (MoS2) has been investigated by scanning tunneling microscopy (STM). On MoS2, we observed single BChl c molecules, dimers or tetramers, depending on the polarity of the solvent. On HOPG, we observed extensive self-assembly of the dimers and tetramers. We propose C=O...H-O...Mg bonding networks for the observed dimer chains, in agreement with former ultraviolet-visible and infrared spectroscopic work. The BChl c moieties in the tetramers are probably linked by four C=O...H-O hydrogen bonds to form a circle and further stabilized by Mg...O-H bondings to underlying BChl c layers. The tetramers form highly ordered, distinct chains and extended two-dimensional networks. We investigated semisynthetic chlorins for comparison by STM but observed that only BChl c self-assembles to well-structured large aggregates on HOPG. The results on the synthetic chlorins support our structure proposition. PMID:12081324

  16. Self-assembled photosystem-I biophotovoltaics on nanostructured TiO2 and ZnO

    PubMed Central

    Mershin, Andreas; Matsumoto, Kazuya; Kaiser, Liselotte; Yu, Daoyong; Vaughn, Michael; Nazeeruddin, Md. K.; Bruce, Barry D.; Graetzel, Michael; Zhang, Shuguang

    2012-01-01

    The abundant pigment-protein membrane complex photosystem-I (PS-I) is at the heart of the Earth’s energy cycle. It is the central molecule in the “Z-scheme” of photosynthesis, converting sunlight into the chemical energy of life. Commandeering this intricately organized photosynthetic nanocircuitry and re-wiring it to produce electricity carries the promise of inexpensive and environmentally friendly solar power. We here report that dry PS-I stabilized by surfactant peptides functioned as both the light-harvester and charge separator in solar cells self-assembled on nanostructured semiconductors. Contrary to previous attempts at biophotovoltaics requiring elaborate surface chemistries, thin film deposition, and illumination concentrated into narrow wavelength ranges the devices described here are straightforward and inexpensive to fabricate and perform well under standard sunlight yielding open circuit photovoltage of 0.5 V, fill factor of 71%, electrical power density of 81 µW/cm2 and photocurrent density of 362 µA/cm2, over four orders of magnitude higher than any photosystem-based biophotovoltaic to date. PMID:22355747

  17. Self-assembled photosystem-I biophotovoltaics on nanostructured TiO2 and ZnO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mershin, Andreas; Matsumoto, Kazuya; Kaiser, Liselotte; Yu, Daoyong; Vaughn, Michael; Nazeeruddin, Md. K.; Bruce, Barry D.; Graetzel, Michael; Zhang, Shuguang

    2012-02-01

    The abundant pigment-protein membrane complex photosystem-I (PS-I) is at the heart of the Earth's energy cycle. It is the central molecule in the ``Z-scheme'' of photosynthesis, converting sunlight into the chemical energy of life. Commandeering this intricately organized photosynthetic nanocircuitry and re-wiring it to produce electricity carries the promise of inexpensive and environmentally friendly solar power. We here report that dry PS-I stabilized by surfactant peptides functioned as both the light-harvester and charge separator in solar cells self-assembled on nanostructured semiconductors. Contrary to previous attempts at biophotovoltaics requiring elaborate surface chemistries, thin film deposition, and illumination concentrated into narrow wavelength ranges the devices described here are straightforward and inexpensive to fabricate and perform well under standard sunlight yielding open circuit photovoltage of 0.5 V, fill factor of 71%, electrical power density of 81 µW/cm2 and photocurrent density of 362 µA/cm2, over four orders of magnitude higher than any photosystem-based biophotovoltaic to date.

  18. Self-assembled photosystem-I biophotovoltaics on nanostructured TiO(2 )and ZnO.

    PubMed

    Mershin, Andreas; Matsumoto, Kazuya; Kaiser, Liselotte; Yu, Daoyong; Vaughn, Michael; Nazeeruddin, Md K; Bruce, Barry D; Graetzel, Michael; Zhang, Shuguang

    2012-01-01

    The abundant pigment-protein membrane complex photosystem-I (PS-I) is at the heart of the Earth's energy cycle. It is the central molecule in the "Z-scheme" of photosynthesis, converting sunlight into the chemical energy of life. Commandeering this intricately organized photosynthetic nanocircuitry and re-wiring it to produce electricity carries the promise of inexpensive and environmentally friendly solar power. We here report that dry PS-I stabilized by surfactant peptides functioned as both the light-harvester and charge separator in solar cells self-assembled on nanostructured semiconductors. Contrary to previous attempts at biophotovoltaics requiring elaborate surface chemistries, thin film deposition, and illumination concentrated into narrow wavelength ranges the devices described here are straightforward and inexpensive to fabricate and perform well under standard sunlight yielding open circuit photovoltage of 0.5 V, fill factor of 71%, electrical power density of 81 µW/cm(2) and photocurrent density of 362 µA/cm(2), over four orders of magnitude higher than any photosystem-based biophotovoltaic to date. PMID:22355747

  19. Smart gating membranes with in situ self-assembled responsive nanogels as functional gates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Feng; Xie, Rui; Liu, Zhuang; Ju, Xiao-Jie; Wang, Wei; Lin, Shuo; Chu, Liang-Yin

    2015-10-01

    Smart gating membranes, inspired by the gating function of ion channels across cell membranes, are artificial membranes composed of non-responsive porous membrane substrates and responsive gates in the membrane pores that are able to dramatically regulate the trans-membrane transport of substances in response to environmental stimuli. Easy fabrication, high flux, significant response and strong mechanical strength are critical for the versatility of such smart gating membranes. Here we show a novel and simple strategy for one-step fabrication of smart gating membranes with three-dimensionally interconnected networks of functional gates, by self-assembling responsive nanogels on membrane pore surfaces in situ during a vapor-induced phase separation process for membrane formation. The smart gating membranes with in situ self-assembled responsive nanogels as functional gates show large flux, significant response and excellent mechanical property simultaneously. Because of the easy fabrication method as well as the concurrent enhancement of flux, response and mechanical property, the proposed smart gating membranes will expand the scope of membrane applications, and provide ever better performances in their applications.

  20. Stimuli-Responsive Codelivery of Oligonucleotides and Drugs by Self-Assembled Peptide Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Sigg, Severin J; Postupalenko, Viktoriia; Duskey, Jason T; Palivan, Cornelia G; Meier, Wolfgang

    2016-03-14

    Ever more emerging combined treatments exploiting synergistic effects of drug combinations demand smart, responsive codelivery carriers to reveal their full potential. In this study, a multifunctional stimuli-responsive amphiphilic peptide was designed and synthesized to self-assemble into nanoparticles capable of co-bearing and -releasing hydrophobic drugs and antisense oligonucleotides for combined therapies. The rational design was based on a hydrophobic l-tryptophan-d-leucine repeating unit derived from a truncated sequence of gramicidin A (gT), to entrap hydrophobic cargo, which is combined with a hydrophilic moiety of histidines to provide electrostatic affinity to nucleotides. Stimuli-responsiveness was implemented by linking the hydrophobic and hydrophilic sequence through an artificial amino acid bearing a disulfide functional group (H3SSgT). Stimuli-responsive peptides self-assembled in spherical nanoparticles in sizes (100-200 nm) generally considered as preferable for drug delivery applications. Responsive peptide nanoparticles revealed notable nucleotide condensing abilities while maintaining the ability to load hydrophobic cargo. The disulfide cleavage site introduced in the peptide sequence induced responsiveness to physiological concentrations of reducing agent, serving to release the incorporated molecules. Furthermore, the peptide nanoparticles, singly loaded or coloaded with boron-dipyrromethene (BODIPY) and/or antisense oligonucleotides, were efficiently taken up by cells. Such amphiphilic peptides that led to noncytotoxic, reduction-responsive nanoparticles capable of codelivering hydrophobic and nucleic acid payloads simultaneously provide potential toward combined treatment strategies to exploit synergistic effects. PMID:26871486

  1. Self-Assembled Epitaxial Au-Oxide Vertically Aligned Nanocomposites for Nanoscale Metamaterials.

    PubMed

    Li, Leigang; Sun, Liuyang; Gomez-Diaz, Juan Sebastian; Hogan, Nicki L; Lu, Ping; Khatkhatay, Fauzia; Zhang, Wenrui; Jian, Jie; Huang, Jijie; Su, Qing; Fan, Meng; Jacob, Clement; Li, Jin; Zhang, Xinghang; Jia, Quanxi; Sheldon, Matthew; Alù, Andrea; Li, Xiaoqin; Wang, Haiyan

    2016-06-01

    Metamaterials made of nanoscale inclusions or artificial unit cells exhibit exotic optical properties that do not exist in natural materials. Promising applications, such as super-resolution imaging, cloaking, hyperbolic propagation, and ultrafast phase velocities have been demonstrated based on mostly micrometer-scale metamaterials and few nanoscale metamaterials. To date, most metamaterials are created using costly and tedious fabrication techniques with limited paths toward reliable large-scale fabrication. In this work, we demonstrate the one-step direct growth of self-assembled epitaxial metal-oxide nanocomposites as a drastically different approach to fabricating large-area nanostructured metamaterials. Using pulsed laser deposition, we fabricated nanocomposite films with vertically aligned gold (Au) nanopillars (∼20 nm in diameter) embedded in various oxide matrices with high epitaxial quality. Strong, broad absorption features in the measured absorbance spectrum are clear signatures of plasmon resonances of Au nanopillars. By tuning their densities on selected substrates, anisotropic optical properties are demonstrated via angular dependent and polarization resolved reflectivity measurements and reproduced by full-wave simulations and effective medium theory. Our model predicts exotic properties, such as zero permittivity responses and topological transitions. Our studies suggest that these self-assembled metal-oxide nanostructures provide an exciting new material platform to control and enhance optical response at nanometer scales. PMID:27186652

  2. Smart gating membranes with in situ self-assembled responsive nanogels as functional gates

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Feng; Xie, Rui; Liu, Zhuang; Ju, Xiao-Jie; Wang, Wei; Lin, Shuo; Chu, Liang-Yin

    2015-01-01

    Smart gating membranes, inspired by the gating function of ion channels across cell membranes, are artificial membranes composed of non-responsive porous membrane substrates and responsive gates in the membrane pores that are able to dramatically regulate the trans-membrane transport of substances in response to environmental stimuli. Easy fabrication, high flux, significant response and strong mechanical strength are critical for the versatility of such smart gating membranes. Here we show a novel and simple strategy for one-step fabrication of smart gating membranes with three-dimensionally interconnected networks of functional gates, by self-assembling responsive nanogels on membrane pore surfaces in situ during a vapor-induced phase separation process for membrane formation. The smart gating membranes with in situ self-assembled responsive nanogels as functional gates show large flux, significant response and excellent mechanical property simultaneously. Because of the easy fabrication method as well as the concurrent enhancement of flux, response and mechanical property, the proposed smart gating membranes will expand the scope of membrane applications, and provide ever better performances in their applications. PMID:26434387

  3. Tissue engineering by self-assembly and bio-printing of living cells

    PubMed Central

    Jakab, Karoly; Marga, Francoise; Norotte, Cyrille; Murphy, Keith; Vunjak-Novakovic, Gordana; Forgacs, Gabor

    2013-01-01

    Biofabrication of living structures with desired topology and functionality requires the interdisciplinary effort of practitioners of the physical, life, medical and engineering sciences. Such efforts are being undertaken in many laboratories around the world. Numerous approaches are being pursued, such as those based on the use of natural or artificial scaffolds, decellularized cadaveric extracellular matrices and lately bioprinting. To be successful in this endeavor it is crucial to provide in vitro micro-environmental clues for the cells resembling those in the organism. Therefore scaffolds populated with differentiated cells or stem cells of increasing complexity and sophistication are being fabricated. However, scaffolds, no matter how sophisticated they are, can cause problems stemming from their degradation, eliciting immunogenic reactions and other a priori unforeseen complications. It is also being realized that ultimately the best approach is to rely on the self-assembly and self-organizing properties of cells and tissues and the innate regenerative capability of the organism itself, not just simply prepare tissue and organ structures in vitro followed by their implantation. Here we briefly review the different strategies for the fabrication of three-dimensional biological structures, in particular bioprinting. We detail a fully biological, scaffoldless, print-based engineering approach that uses self-assembling multicellular units as bioink particles and employs early developmental morphogenetic principles, such as cell sorting and tissue fusion. PMID:20811127

  4. A Case Study of the Likes and Dislikes of DNA and RNA in Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Zuo, Hua; Wu, Siyu; Li, Mo; Li, Yulin; Jiang, Wen; Mao, Chengde

    2015-12-01

    Programmed self-assembly of nucleic acids (DNA and RNA) is an active research area as it promises a general approach for nanoconstruction. Whereas DNA self-assembly has been extensively studied, RNA self-assembly lags much behind. One strategy to boost RNA self-assembly is to adapt the methods of DNA self-assembly for RNA self-assembly because of the chemical and structural similarities of DNA and RNA. However, these two types of molecules are still significantly different. To enable the rational design of RNA self-assembly, a thorough examination of their likes and dislikes in programmed self-assembly is needed. The current work begins to address this task. It was found that similar, two-stranded motifs of RNA and DNA lead to similar, but clearly different nanostructures. PMID:26457993

  5. Anion-dipole interactions make the homopolymers self-assemble into multiple nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Wang, Long-Hai; Zhang, Zi-Dan; Hong, Chun-Yan; He, Xue-Hao; You, Wei; You, Ye-Zi

    2015-05-27

    Anion-dipole interactions can make homopolymers self-assemble like an amphiphilic block copolymer. Generally, common homopolymers cannot self-assemble into multiple nanostructures. Here, it is reported that anion-dipole interactions can enable a number of homopolymers to achieve a variety of self-assembly behaviors in aqueous solution. Such interactions and self-assembly features have been exclusively reserved for amphiphilic (block) polymers until now. PMID:25873566

  6. Self-assembly of hybrid structures on nano templates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Ruomiao

    This dissertation describes the investigation on the synthesis of hybrid structures on nano-templates. Fabrication of molecular nano-patterns of organic amphiphiles (e.g. fatty acids) by self-assembly has been discussed here, and their application as templates for two-dimensional in situ synthesis of metal soap molecular pattern has been demonstrated. The synthesis of nanoparticle---nanorod hybrid structure represents another effort to achieve hybrid materials. Therefore, methods to create complex inorganic---organic nano---hybrid are provided by this work. AFM disclosed the pattern structures of the self-assembled monolayers as designed nanoscaled patterns. It is observed two pattern periodicities reflecting the head-to-head and head-to-tail molecular assembly tendencies of the fatty acids and their dependence on the molecular structure and chain length, which exhibits a linear increase in the periodicity with an increasing molecular chain length. The investigation on molecular patterns of self-assembled monolayers of metal arachidates on graphite by AFM and FTIR is described. Metal arachidate self-assemblies show similar stripe pattern and periodicities as those of arachidic acid. The monolayer structure is mainly dictated by graphite, while the type of metal ions mainly affects the domain size, shape and regularity. The results of AFM and FTIR are correlated to the Irving-Williams Series, which predicts bond strength of the metal ions to ligands. The spin coated films from binary solutions of nanoparticles and fatty acids with different chain lengths (Even number of carbon, C18--C26), have been used to study the effect of nanoparticles on self-assemble pattern of fatty acids. C18--C22 acids formed uniform nanorods attached and induced by nanoparticles, while the self-assembled stripe patterns of C24 and C26 were unaffected by the presence of nanoparticles. The nanoparticles were aligned on C26 monolayer. The seeded nucleation mechanism has been studied by AFM

  7. Toward three-dimensional microelectronic systems: directed self-assembly of silicon microcubes via DNA surface functionalization.

    PubMed

    Lämmerhardt, Nico; Merzsch, Stephan; Ledig, Johannes; Bora, Achyut; Waag, Andreas; Tornow, Marc; Mischnick, Petra

    2013-07-01

    The huge and intelligent processing power of three-dimensional (3D) biological "processors" like the human brain with clock speeds of only 0.1 kHz is an extremely fascinating property, which is based on a massively parallel interconnect strategy. Artificial silicon microprocessors are 7 orders of magnitude faster. Nevertheless, they do not show any indication of intelligent processing power, mostly due to their very limited interconnectivity. Massively parallel interconnectivity can only be realized in three dimensions. Three-dimensional artificial processors would therefore be at the root of fabricating artificially intelligent systems. A first step in this direction would be the self-assembly of silicon based building blocks into 3D structures. We report on the self-assembly of such building blocks by molecular recognition, and on the electrical characterization of the formed assemblies. First, planar silicon substrates were functionalized with self-assembling monolayers of 3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane for coupling of oligonucleotides (single stranded DNA) with glutaric aldehyde. The oligonucleotide immobilization was confirmed and quantified by hybridization with fluorescence-labeled complementary oligonucleotides. After the individual processing steps, the samples were analyzed by contact angle measurements, ellipsometry, atomic force microscopy, and fluorescence microscopy. Patterned DNA-functionalized layers were fabricated by microcontact printing (μCP) and photolithography. Silicon microcubes of 3 μm edge length as model objects for first 3D self-assembly experiments were fabricated out of silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafers by a combination of reactive ion etching (RIE) and selective wet etching. The microcubes were then surface-functionalized using the same protocol as on planar substrates, and their self-assembly was demonstrated both on patterned silicon surfaces (88% correctly placed cubes), and to cube aggregates by complementary DNA

  8. Ultrathin efficient perovskite solar cells employing a periodic structure of a composite hole conductor for elevated plasmonic light harvesting and hole collection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Long, Mingzhu; Chen, Zefeng; Zhang, Tiankai; Xiao, Yubin; Zeng, Xiaoliang; Chen, Jian; Yan, Keyou; Xu, Jianbin

    2016-03-01

    We developed a molecule/polymer composite hole transporting material (HTM) with a periodic microstructure for morphology replication of a corrugated Au electrode, which in combination plays a dual role in the optical and electronic enhancement of high performance perovskite solar cells (PSCs). The electro-optics revealed that perovskite couldn't readily extinct the red light even though the thickness increased to 370 nm, but we found that the quasi periodic microstructure composite (PMC) HTM in combination with the conformal Au electrode could promote the absorption through the enhanced cavity effects, leading to comparable absorption even using much thinner perovskite (240 nm). We identified that the cavity was the combination of Fabry-Pérot interferometer and surface plasmonic resonance, with light harvesting enhancement through surface plasmon polariton or waveguide modes that propagate in the plane of the perovskite layer. On the other hand, the PMC HTM increased hole conductivity by one order of magnitude with respect to standard spiro-OMeTAD HTM due to molecular packing and self-assembly, embodying traceable hole mobility and density elevation up to 3 times, and thus the hysteresis was greatly avoided. Owing to dual optical and electronic enhancement, the PMC PSC afforded high efficiency PSC using as thin as 240 nm perovskite layer, delivering a Voc of 1.05 V, Jsc of 22.9 mA cm-2, FF of 0.736, and efficiency amounting to 17.7% PCE, the highest efficiency with ultrathin perovskite layer.We developed a molecule/polymer composite hole transporting material (HTM) with a periodic microstructure for morphology replication of a corrugated Au electrode, which in combination plays a dual role in the optical and electronic enhancement of high performance perovskite solar cells (PSCs). The electro-optics revealed that perovskite couldn't readily extinct the red light even though the thickness increased to 370 nm, but we found that the quasi periodic microstructure

  9. Reconstitution of Gloeobacter violaceus Rhodopsin with a Light-Harvesting Carotenoid Antenna†

    PubMed Central

    Imasheva, Eleonora S.; Balashov, Sergei P.; Choi, Ah Reum; Jung, Kwang-Hwan; Lanyi, Janos K.

    2009-01-01

    We show that salinixanthin, the light-harvesting carotenoid antenna of xanthorhodopsin, can be reconstituted into the retinal protein from Gloeobacter violaceus expressed in E. coli. Reconstitution of gloeobacter rhodopsin with the carotenoid is accompanied by characteristic absorption changes and the appearance of CD bands similar to those observed for xanthorhodopsin that indicate immobilization and twist of the carotenoid in the binding site. As in xanthorhodopsin, the carotenoid functions as a light-harvesting antenna. The excitation spectrum for retinal fluorescence emission shows that ca. 36% of the energy absorbed by the carotenoid is transferred to the retinal. From excitation anisotropy, we calculate the angle between the two chromophores as ca. 50°, similar to that in xanthorhodopsin. The results indicate that gloeobacter rhodopsin binds salinixanthin in a similar way as xanthorhodopsin, and suggest that it might bind a carotenoid also in vivo. In the crystallographic structure of xanthorhodopsin, the conjugated chain of the carotenoid lies on the surface of helices E and F, and the 4-keto-ring is immersed in the protein at van der Waals distance from the ionone ring of the retinal. The 4-keto-ring is in the space occupied by a tryptophan in bacteriorhodopsin, which is replaced by the smaller glycine in xanthorhodopsin and gloeobacter rhodopsin. Specific binding of the carotenoid and its light-harvesting function are eliminated by a single mutation of the gloeobacter protein that replaces this glycine with a tryptophan. This indicates that the 4-keto-ring is critically involved in carotenoid binding, and suggests that a number of other recently identified retinal proteins, from a diverse group of organisms, could also contain carotenoid antenna since they carry the homologous glycine near the retinal. PMID:19842712

  10. Fluorescence enhancement of light-harvesting complex 2 from purple bacteria coupled to spherical gold nanoparticles

    SciTech Connect

    Bujak, Ł.; Czechowski, N.; Piatkowski, D.; Litvin, R.; Mackowski, S.; Brotosudarmo, T. H. P.; Pichler, S.; Cogdell, R. J.; Heiss, W.

    2011-10-24

    The influence of plasmon excitations in spherical gold nanoparticles on the optical properties of a light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2) from the purple bacteria Rhodopseudomonas palustris has been studied. Systematic analysis is facilitated by controlling the thickness of a silica layer between Au nanoparticles and LH2 complexes. Fluorescence of LH2 complexes features substantial increase when these complexes are separated by 12 nm from the gold nanoparticles. At shorter distances, non-radiative quenching leads to a decrease of fluorescence emission. The enhancement of fluorescence originates predominantly from an increase of absorption of pigments comprising the LH2 complex.

  11. Path induced coherent energy transfer in light-harvesting complexes in purple bacteria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Kewei; Ye, Jun; Zhao, Yang

    2014-09-01

    Features of path dependent energy transfer in a dual-ring light-harvesting (LH2) complexes (B850) system have been examined in detail systematically. The Frenkel-Dirac time dependent variational method with the Davydov D1 Ansatz is employed with detailed evolution of polaron dynamics in real space readily obtained. It is found that the phase of the transmission amplitude through the LH2 complexes plays an important role in constructing the coherent excitonic energy transfer. It is also found that the symmetry breaking caused by the dimerization of bacteriochlorophylls and coherence or correlation between two rings will be conducive in enhancing the exciton transfer efficiency.

  12. Fluorescence enhancement of light-harvesting complex 2 from purple bacteria coupled to spherical gold nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bujak, Ł.; Czechowski, N.; Piatkowski, D.; Litvin, R.; Mackowski, S.; Brotosudarmo, T. H. P.; Cogdell, R. J.; Pichler, S.; Heiss, W.

    2011-10-01

    The influence of plasmon excitations in spherical gold nanoparticles on the optical properties of a light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2) from the purple bacteria Rhodopseudomonas palustris has been studied. Systematic analysis is facilitated by controlling the thickness of a silica layer between Au nanoparticles and LH2 complexes. Fluorescence of LH2 complexes features substantial increase when these complexes are separated by 12 nm from the gold nanoparticles. At shorter distances, non-radiative quenching leads to a decrease of fluorescence emission. The enhancement of fluorescence originates predominantly from an increase of absorption of pigments comprising the LH2 complex.

  13. Toward understanding as photosynthetic biosignatures: light harvesting and energy transfer calculation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komatsu, Y.; Umemura, M.; Shoji, M.; Shiraishi, K.; Kayanuma, M.; Yabana, K.

    2014-03-01

    Among several proposed biosignatures, red edge is a direct evidence of photosynthetic life if it is detected (Kiang et al 2007). Red edge is a sharp change in reflectance spectra of vegetation in NIR region (about 700-750 nm). The sign of red edge is observed by Earthshine or remote sensing (Wolstencroft & Raven 2002, Woolf et al 2002). But, why around 700-750 nm? The photosynthetic organisms on Earth have evolved to optimize the sunlight condition. However, if we consider about photosynthetic organism on extrasolar planets, they should have developed to utilize the spectra of its principal star. Thus, it is not strange even if it shows different vegetation spectra. In this study, we focused on the light absorption mechanism of photosynthetic organisms on Earth and investigated the fundamental properties of the light harvesting mechanisms, which is the first stage for the light absorption. Light harvesting complexes contain photosynthetic pigments like chlorophylls. Effective light absorption and the energy transfer are accomplished by the electronic excitations of collective photosynthetic pigments. In order to investigate this mechanism, we constructed an energy transfer model by using a dipole-dipole approximation for the interactions between electronic excitations. Transition moments and transition energies of each pigment are calculated at the time-dependent density functional theory (TDDFT) level (Marques & Gross 2004). Quantum dynamics simulation for the excitation energy transfer was calculated by the Liouvelle's equation. We adopted the model to purple bacteria, which has been studied experimentally and known to absorb lower energy. It is meaningful to focus on the mechanism of this bacteria, since in the future mission, M planets will become a important target. We calculated the oscillator strengths in one light harvesting complex and confirmed the validity by comparing to the experimental data. This complex is made of an inner and an outer ring. The

  14. Ab initio calculation of excitonic Hamiltonian of light-harvesting complex LH1 of Thermochromatium tepidum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kozlov, Maxim I.; Poddubnyy, Vladimir V.; Glebov, Ilya O.; Belov, Aleksandr S.; Khokhlov, Daniil V.

    2016-02-01

    The electronic properties of light-harvesting complexes determine the efficiency of energy transfer in photosynthetic antennae. Ab initio calculations of the electronic properties of bacteriochlorophylls (composing the LH1 complex of the purple bacteria Thermochromatium tepidum) were performed. Based on these calculations, the excitonic Hamiltonian of a native cyclic complex and the Hamiltonians of open complexes with several removed bacteriochlorophylls were constructed. Absorption spectra calculated based on these Hamiltonians agree well with the experimental data. We found that the parameters of interaction between the neighboring bacteriochlorophylls are significantly larger than the empirical parameters suggested previously.

  15. Energy transfer from conjugated polymer to bacterial light-harvesting complex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buczynska, D.; Bujak, Ł.; Loi, M. A.; Brotosudarmo, T. H. P.; Cogdell, R.; Mackowski, S.

    2012-10-01

    Energy transfer from a conjugated polymer blend (poly(9,9-dioctylfluorenyl-2,7-diyl):poly (2-methoxy-5-(2-ethylhexyloxy)-1, 4-phenylenevinylene) to a light-harvesting complex 2 from purple bacteria has been demonstrated using time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy. For our hybrid nanostructure, we observe a 30% reduction of the fluorescence lifetime of the polymer emission as compared to the pure polymer layer. This result is an important step towards integrating naturally evolved biomolecules with synthetic materials into biohybrid organic electronic systems.

  16. Path induced coherent energy transfer in light-harvesting complexes in purple bacteria.

    PubMed

    Sun, Kewei; Ye, Jun; Zhao, Yang

    2014-09-28

    Features of path dependent energy transfer in a dual-ring light-harvesting (LH2) complexes (B850) system have been examined in detail systematically. The Frenkel-Dirac time dependent variational method with the Davydov D1 Ansatz is employed with detailed evolution of polaron dynamics in real space readily obtained. It is found that the phase of the transmission amplitude through the LH2 complexes plays an important role in constructing the coherent excitonic energy transfer. It is also found that the symmetry breaking caused by the dimerization of bacteriochlorophylls and coherence or correlation between two rings will be conducive in enhancing the exciton transfer efficiency. PMID:25273408

  17. Neutron and light scattering studies of light-harvesting photosynthetic antenna complexes

    SciTech Connect

    Tang, Kuo-Hsiang; Blankenship, Robert E.

    2011-06-28

    Small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) and dynamic light scattering (DLS) have been employed in studying the structural information of various biological systems, particularly in systems without high-resolution structural information available. In this report, we briefly present some principles and biological applications of neutron scattering and DLS, compare the differences in information that can be obtained with small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), and then report recent studies of SANS and DLS, together with other biophysical approaches, for light-harvesting antenna complexes and reaction centers of purple and green phototrophic bacteria.

  18. Light-Harvesting in n-ZnO/ p-Silicon Heterojunctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, L.; Shan, C. X.; Li, B. H.; Yao, B.; Shen, D. Z.; Chu, B.; Lu, Y. M.

    2010-11-01

    Zinc oxide (ZnO) films were deposited onto Si to form n-ZnO/ p-Si heterojunctions. Under the illumination of by both ultraviolet (UV) light and sunlight, obvious photovoltaic behavior was observed. It was found that the conversion efficiency of the heterojunctions increased significantly with increasing thickness of the ZnO film, and the mechanism for light-harvesting in the heterojunctions is discussed. The results suggest that ZnO films may be helpful to increasing the harvesting of UV photons, thus decreasing the thermalization loss of UV energy in Si-based solar cells.

  19. Light-harvesting effect in photoelectric conversion with dye multilayers on a semiconductor electrode

    SciTech Connect

    Sato, H.; Kawasaki, M.; Kasatani, K.; Higuchi Y.; Azuma, T.; Nishiyama, Y.

    1988-02-11

    A light-harvesting effect in the sensitized photocurrent of dye-containing multilayers on an Sb-doped SnO/sub 2/ optically transparent semiconductor electrode was studied. 2,8-Bis(dimethylamino)-10-dodecylacridinium bromide (BDA) was included as an antenna dye in the outer monolayer separated from the semiconductor surface with fatty acid monolayer(s), and dioctadecylthiacarbocyanine iodide (DTC) as a reaction center dye was incorporated in the monolayer in direct contact with the semiconductor. A remarkable enhancement of the photocurrent was observed as a result of efficient energy transfer from BDA to DTC.

  20. Up-converted fluorescence from photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes linearly dependent on excitation intensity.

    PubMed

    Leiger, Kristjan; Freiberg, Arvi

    2016-01-01

    Weak up-converted fluorescence related to bacteriochlorophyll a was recorded from various detergent-isolated and membrane-embedded light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes as well as from the functional membranes of photosynthetic purple bacteria under continuous-wave infrared laser excitation at 1064 nm, far outside the optically allowed singlet absorption bands of the chromophore. The fluorescence increases linearly with the excitation power, distinguishing it from the previously observed two-photon excited fluorescence upon femtosecond pulse excitation. Possible mechanisms of this excitation are discussed. PMID:25764015

  1. Coherence dynamics in light-harvesting complexes with two-colour spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richards, Gethin H.; Curmi, Paul M. G.; Wilk, Krystyna E.; Quiney, Harry M.; Davis, Jeffrey A.

    2013-03-01

    We investigate coherent dynamics in the cryptophyte light-harvesting complex Phycocyanin-645 (PC-645). A two-colour four-wave mixing experiment allows us to isolate a coherence pathway and observe its evolution in the absence of other signals. We measured a decoherence time of 540fs for the coherence [1]. Additionally oscillations in the signal pathway give evidence for the coherent excitation of states outside the bandwidth of the laser pulse. This suggests strong coupling between the excited states and phonon modes [1].

  2. Multidimensional hierarchical self-assembly of amphiphilic cylindrical block comicelles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiu, Huibin; Hudson, Zachary M.; Winnik, Mitchell A.; Manners, Ian

    2015-03-01

    Self-assembly of molecular and block copolymer amphiphiles represents a well-established route to micelles with a wide variety of shapes and gel-like phases. We demonstrate an analogous process, but on a longer length scale, in which amphiphilic P-H-P and H-P-H cylindrical triblock comicelles with hydrophobic (H) or polar (P) segments that are monodisperse in length are able to self-assemble side by side or end to end in nonsolvents for the central or terminal segments, respectively. This allows the formation of cylindrical supermicelles and one-dimensional (1D) or 3D superstructures that persist in both solution and the solid state. These assemblies possess multiple levels of structural hierarchy in combination with existence on a multimicrometer-length scale, features that are generally only found in natural materials.

  3. Charged diphenylalanine nanotubes and controlled hierarchical self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Wang, Minjie; Du, Lingjie; Wu, Xinglong; Xiong, Shijie; Chu, Paul K

    2011-06-28

    Hexagonal hierarchical microtubular structures are produced by diphenylalanine self-assembly and the ratio of the relative humidity in the growth chamber to the diphenylalanine concentration (defined as the RH-FF ratio) determines the microtubular morphology. The hexagonal arrangement of the diphenylalanine molecules first induces the hexagonal nanotubes with opposite charges on the two ends, and the dipolar electric field on the nanotubes serves as the driving force. Side-by-side hexagonal aggregation and end-to-end arrangement ensue finally producing a hexagonal hierarchical microtubular structure. Staining experiments and the external electric field-induced parallel arrangement provide evidence of the existence of opposite charges and dipolar electric field. In this self-assembly, the different RH-FF ratios induce different contents of crystalline phases. This leads to different initial nanotube numbers finally yielding different microtubular morphologies. Our calculation based on the dipole model supports the dipole-field mechanism that leads to the different microtubular morphologies. PMID:21591732

  4. Self-Assembly of Graphene on Carbon Nanotube Surfaces

    PubMed Central

    Li, Kaiyuan; Eres, Gyula; Howe, Jane; Chuang, Yen-Jun; Li, Xufan; Gu, Zhanjun; Zhang, Litong; Xie, Sishen; Pan, Zhengwei

    2013-01-01

    The rolling up of a graphene sheet into a tube is a standard visualization tool for illustrating carbon nanotube (CNT) formation. However, the actual processes of rolling up graphene sheets into CNTs in laboratory syntheses have never been demonstrated. Here we report conformal growth of graphene by carbon self-assembly on single-wall and multi-wall CNTs using chemical vapor deposition (CVD) of methane without the presence of metal catalysts. The new graphene layers roll up into seamless coaxial cylinders encapsulating the existing CNTs, but their adhesion to the primary CNTs is weak due to the existence of lattice misorientation. Our study shows that graphene nucleation and growth by self-assembly of carbon on the inactive carbon basal plane of CNTs occurs by a new mechanism that is markedly different from epitaxial growth on metal surfaces, opening up the possibility of graphene growth on many other non-metal substrates by simple methane CVD. PMID:23912638

  5. Electrostatically Directed Self-Assembly of Ultrathin Supramolecular Polymer Microcapsules

    PubMed Central

    Parker, Richard M; Zhang, Jing; Zheng, Yu; Coulston, Roger J; Smith, Clive A; Salmon, Andrew R; Yu, Ziyi; Scherman, Oren A; Abell, Chris

    2015-01-01

    Supramolecular self-assembly offers routes to challenging architectures on the molecular and macroscopic scale. Coupled with microfluidics it has been used to make microcapsules—where a 2D sheet is shaped in 3D, encapsulating the volume within. In this paper, a versatile methodology to direct the accumulation of capsule-forming components to the droplet interface using electrostatic interactions is described. In this approach, charged copolymers are selectively partitioned to the microdroplet interface by a complementary charged surfactant for subsequent supramolecular cross-linking via cucurbit[8]uril. This dynamic assembly process is employed to selectively form both hollow, ultrathin microcapsules and solid microparticles from a single solution. The ability to dictate the distribution of a mixture of charged copolymers within the microdroplet, as demonstrated by the single-step fabrication of distinct core–shell microcapsules, gives access to a new generation of innovative self-assembled constructs. PMID:26213532

  6. DNA Self-assembly and Computer System Fabrication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dwyer, Chris

    2006-11-01

    The migration of circuit fabrication technology from the microscale to the nanoscale has generated a great deal of interest in how the fundamental physical limitations of materials will change the way computer systems are engineered. The changing relationships between performance, defects, and cost have motivated research into so-called disruptive or exotic technologies and draws inspiration from systems found in biology. Advances in DNA self-assembly have demonstrated versatile and programmable methods for the synthesis of complex nanostructures suitable for logic circuitry. Several recent advances in programmable DNA self-assembly and the theory and design of DNA nanostructures for computing will be presented. The advantages of this technology go beyond the simple scaling of device feature sizes (sub-20nm) to enable new modes of computation that are otherwise impractical with conventional technologies. A brief survey of several computer architectures that take advantage of this new technology will also be presented.

  7. Biomolecular decision-making process for self assembly.

    SciTech Connect

    Osbourn, Gordon Cecil

    2005-01-01

    The brain is often identified with decision-making processes in the biological world. In fact, single cells, single macromolecules (proteins) and populations of molecules also make simple decisions. These decision processes are essential to survival and to the biological self-assembly and self-repair processes that we seek to emulate. How do these tiny systems make effective decisions? How do they make decisions in concert with a cooperative network of other molecules or cells? How can we emulate the decision-making behaviors of small-scale biological systems to program and self-assemble microsystems? This LDRD supported research to answer these questions. Our work included modeling and simulation of protein populations to help us understand, mimic, and categorize molecular decision-making mechanisms that nonequilibrium systems can exhibit. This work is an early step towards mimicking such nanoscale and microscale biomolecular decision-making processes in inorganic systems.

  8. Protein-directed self-assembly of a fullerene crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Kook-Han; Ko, Dong-Kyun; Kim, Yong-Tae; Kim, Nam Hyeong; Paul, Jaydeep; Zhang, Shao-Qing; Murray, Christopher B.; Acharya, Rudresh; Degrado, William F.; Kim, Yong Ho; Grigoryan, Gevorg

    2016-04-01

    Learning to engineer self-assembly would enable the precise organization of molecules by design to create matter with tailored properties. Here we demonstrate that proteins can direct the self-assembly of buckminsterfullerene (C60) into ordered superstructures. A previously engineered tetrameric helical bundle binds C60 in solution, rendering it water soluble. Two tetramers associate with one C60, promoting further organization revealed in a 1.67-Å crystal structure. Fullerene groups occupy periodic lattice sites, sandwiched between two Tyr residues from adjacent tetramers. Strikingly, the assembly exhibits high charge conductance, whereas both the protein-alone crystal and amorphous C60 are electrically insulating. The affinity of C60 for its crystal-binding site is estimated to be in the nanomolar range, with lattices of known protein crystals geometrically compatible with incorporating the motif. Taken together, these findings suggest a new means of organizing fullerene molecules into a rich variety of lattices to generate new properties by design.

  9. Prospects for using self-assembled nucleic acid structures.

    PubMed

    Rudchenko, M N; Zamyatnin, A A

    2015-04-01

    According to the central dogma in molecular biology, nucleic acids are assigned with key functions on storing and executing genetic information in any living cell. However, features of nucleic acids are not limited only with properties providing template-dependent biosynthetic processes. Studies of DNA and RNA unveiled unique features of these polymers able to make various self-assembled three-dimensional structures that, among other things, use the complementarity principle. Here, we review various self-assembled nucleic acid structures as well as application of DNA and RNA to develop nanomaterials, molecular automata, and nanodevices. It can be expected that in the near future results of these developments will allow designing novel next-generation diagnostic systems and medicinal drugs. PMID:25869355

  10. Linker-Mediated Self-Assembly Dynamics of Charged Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Lin, Guanhua; Chee, See Wee; Raj, Sanoj; Král, Petr; Mirsaidov, Utkur

    2016-08-23

    Using in situ liquid cell transmission electron microscopy (TEM), we visualized a stepwise self-assembly of surfactant-coated and hydrated gold nanoparticles (NPs) into linear chains or branched networks. The NP binding is facilitated by linker molecules, ethylenediammonium, which form hydrogen bonds with surfactant molecules of neighboring NPs. The observed spacing between bound neighboring NPs, ∼15 Å, matches the combined length of two surfactants and one linker molecule. Molecular dynamics simulations reveal that for lower concentrations of linkers, NPs with charged surfactants cannot be fully neutralized by strongly binding divalent linkers, so that NPs carry higher effective charges and tend to form chains, due to poor screening. The highly polar NP surfaces polarize and partly immobilize nearby water molecules, which promotes NPs binding. The presented experimental and theoretical approach allows for detail observation and explanation of self-assembly processes in colloidal nanosystems. PMID:27494560

  11. Self-Assembly of Graphene on Carbon Nanotube Surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Kaiyuan; Eres, Gyula; Howe, Jane; Chuang, Yen-Jun; Li, Xufan; Gu, Zhanjun; Zhang, Litong; Xie, Sishen; Pan, Zhengwei

    2013-08-01

    The rolling up of a graphene sheet into a tube is a standard visualization tool for illustrating carbon nanotube (CNT) formation. However, the actual processes of rolling up graphene sheets into CNTs in laboratory syntheses have never been demonstrated. Here we report conformal growth of graphene by carbon self-assembly on single-wall and multi-wall CNTs using chemical vapor deposition (CVD) of methane without the presence of metal catalysts. The new graphene layers roll up into seamless coaxial cylinders encapsulating the existing CNTs, but their adhesion to the primary CNTs is weak due to the existence of lattice misorientation. Our study shows that graphene nucleation and growth by self-assembly of carbon on the inactive carbon basal plane of CNTs occurs by a new mechanism that is markedly different from epitaxial growth on metal surfaces, opening up the possibility of graphene growth on many other non-metal substrates by simple methane CVD.

  12. Stable doping of carbon nanotubes via molecular self assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, B.; Chen, Y.; Podzorov, V.; Cook, A.; Zakhidov, A.

    2014-10-14

    We report a novel method for stable doping of carbon nanotubes (CNT) based on methods of molecular self assembly. A conformal growth of a self-assembled monolayer of fluoroalkyl trichloro-silane (FTS) at CNT surfaces results in a strong increase of the sheet conductivity of CNT electrodes by 60–300%, depending on the CNT chirality and composition. The charge carrier mobility of undoped partially aligned CNT films was independently estimated in a field-effect transistor geometry (~100 cm²V⁻¹s⁻¹). The hole density induced by the FTS monolayer in CNT sheets is estimated to be ~1.8 ×10¹⁴cm⁻². We also show that FTS doping of CNT anodes greatly improves the performance of organic solar cells. This large and stable doping effect, easily achieved in large-area samples, makes this approach very attractive for applications of CNTs in transparent and flexible electronics.

  13. Calixarene-encapsulated nanoparticles: self-assembly into functional nanomaterials†

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Alexander

    2007-01-01

    Calixarenes are excellent surfactants for enhancing the dispersion and self-assembly of metal nanoparticles into well-defined structures, particularly those with unit length scales in the 10–100 nm size range. Particles within these ensembles are strongly coupled, giving rise to unique collective optical or magnetic properties. The self-assembled nanostructures described in this feature article include 2D arrays of colloidal Au nanoparticles with size-dependent plasmonic responses, and sub-100 nm Co nanoparticle rings with chiral magnetic states. These nanoparticle assemblies may be further developed for applications in chemical sensing based on surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) and as binary elements for nonvolatile memory, respectively. PMID:16582988

  14. Self Assembled Structures by Directional Solidification of Eutectics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dynys, Frederick W.; Sayir, Ali

    2004-01-01

    Interest in ordered porous structures has grown because of there unique properties such as photonic bandgaps, high backing packing density and high surface to volume ratio. Inspired by nature, biometric strategies using self assembled organic molecules dominate the development of hierarchical inorganic structures. Directional solidification of eutectics (DSE) also exhibit self assembly characteristics to form hierarchical metallic and inorganic structures. Crystallization of diphasic materials by DSE can produce two dimensional ordered structures consisting of rods or lamella. By selective removal of phases, DSE is capable to fabricate ordered pore arrays or ordered pin arrays. Criteria and limitations to fabricate hierarchical structures will be presented. Porous structures in silicon base alloys and ceramic systems will be reported.

  15. Self-assembly of nanomaterials at fluid interfaces.

    PubMed

    Toor, Anju; Feng, Tao; Russell, Thomas P

    2016-05-01

    Recent developments in the field of the self-assembly of nanoscale materials such as nanoparticles, nanorods and nanosheets at liquid/liquid interfaces are reviewed. Self-assembly behavior of both biological and synthetic particles is discussed. For biological nanoparticles, the nanoparticle assembly at fluid interfaces provides a simple route for directing nanoparticles into 2D or 3D constructs with hierarchical ordering. The interfacial assembly of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) at liquid interfaces would play a key role in applications such as nanotube fractionation, flexible electronic thin-film fabrication and synthesis of porous SWCNT/polymer composites foams. Liquids can be structured by the jamming of nanoparticle surfactants at fluid interfaces. By controlling the interfacial packing of nanoparticle surfactants using external triggers, a new class of materials can be generated that combines the desirable characteristics of fluids such as rapid transport of energy carriers with the structural stability of a solid. PMID:27233643

  16. Self-assembly of graphene on carbon nanotube surfaces.

    PubMed

    Li, Kaiyuan; Eres, Gyula; Howe, Jane; Chuang, Yen-Jun; Li, Xufan; Gu, Zhanjun; Zhang, Litong; Xie, Sishen; Pan, Zhengwei

    2013-01-01

    The rolling up of a graphene sheet into a tube is a standard visualization tool for illustrating carbon nanotube (CNT) formation. However, the actual processes of rolling up graphene sheets into CNTs in laboratory syntheses have never been demonstrated. Here we report conformal growth of graphene by carbon self-assembly on single-wall and multi-wall CNTs using chemical vapor deposition (CVD) of methane without the presence of metal catalysts. The new graphene layers roll up into seamless coaxial cylinders encapsulating the existing CNTs, but their adhesion to the primary CNTs is weak due to the existence of lattice misorientation. Our study shows that graphene nucleation and growth by self-assembly of carbon on the inactive carbon basal plane of CNTs occurs by a new mechanism that is markedly different from epitaxial growth on metal surfaces, opening up the possibility of graphene growth on many other non-metal substrates by simple methane CVD. PMID:23912638

  17. Ultrathin efficient perovskite solar cells employing a periodic structure of a composite hole conductor for elevated plasmonic light harvesting and hole collection.

    PubMed

    Long, Mingzhu; Chen, Zefeng; Zhang, Tiankai; Xiao, Yubin; Zeng, Xiaoliang; Chen, Jian; Yan, Keyou; Xu, Jianbin

    2016-03-28

    We developed a molecule/polymer composite hole transporting material (HTM) with a periodic microstructure for morphology replication of a corrugated Au electrode, which in combination plays a dual role in the optical and electronic enhancement of high performance perovskite solar cells (PSCs). The electro-optics revealed that perovskite couldn't readily extinct the red light even though the thickness increased to 370 nm, but we found that the quasi periodic microstructure composite (PMC) HTM in combination with the conformal Au electrode could promote the absorption through the enhanced cavity effects, leading to comparable absorption even using much thinner perovskite (240 nm). We identified that the cavity was the combination of Fabry-Pérot interferometer and surface plasmonic resonance, with light harvesting enhancement through surface plasmon polariton or waveguide modes that propagate in the plane of the perovskite layer. On the other hand, the PMC HTM increased hole conductivity by one order of magnitude with respect to standard spiro-OMeTAD HTM due to molecular packing and self-assembly, embodying traceable hole mobility and density elevation up to 3 times, and thus the hysteresis was greatly avoided. Owing to dual optical and electronic enhancement, the PMC PSC afforded high efficiency PSC using as thin as 240 nm perovskite layer, delivering a V(oc) of 1.05 V, J(sc) of 22.9 mA cm(-2), FF of 0.736, and efficiency amounting to 17.7% PCE, the highest efficiency with ultrathin perovskite layer. PMID:26377231

  18. Intrinsic universality and the computational power of self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Woods, Damien

    2015-07-28

    Molecular self-assembly, the formation of large structures by small pieces of matter sticking together according to simple local interactions, is a ubiquitous phenomenon. A challenging engineering goal is to design a few molecules so that large numbers of them can self-assemble into desired complicated target objects. Indeed, we would like to understand the ultimate capabilities and limitations of this bottom-up fabrication process. We look to theoretical models of algorithmic self-assembly, where small square tiles stick together according to simple local rules in order to carry out a crystal growth process. In this survey, we focus on the use of simulation between such models to classify and separate their computational and expressive powers. Roughly speaking, one model simulates another if they grow the same structures, via the same dynamical growth processes. Our journey begins with the result that there is a single intrinsically universal tile set that, with appropriate initialization and spatial scaling, simulates any instance of Winfree's abstract Tile Assembly Model. This universal tile set exhibits something stronger than Turing universality: it captures the geometry and dynamics of any simulated system in a very direct way. From there we find that there is no such tile set in the more restrictive non-cooperative model, proving it weaker than the full Tile Assembly Model. In the two-handed model, where large structures can bind together in one step, we encounter an infinite set of infinite hierarchies of strictly increasing simulation power. Towards the end of our trip, we find one tile to rule them all: a single rotatable flipable polygonal tile that simulates any tile assembly system. We find another tile that aperiodically tiles the plane (but with small gaps). These and other recent results show that simulation is giving rise to a kind of computational complexity theory for self-assembly. It seems this could be the beginning of a much longer journey

  19. Self-assembly of phenylalanine-based molecules.

    PubMed

    German, Helen W; Uyaver, Sahin; Hansmann, Ulrich H E

    2015-03-01

    Using molecular dynamics, we study the self-assembly of phenylalanine with charged end-groups at various temperatures and concentrations. As in the case of diphenylalanine, we observe the formation of nanotubes; however, phenylalanine aggregates in layers of four, not six, molecules. The observed aggregates are consistent with recent experimental measurements of fibrils obtained from mice with phenylketonuria. We investigate the stability and the mechanism by which these tubular structures form and discuss potential toxicity mechanisms. PMID:25347763

  20. Propagating Waves of Self-assembly in Organosilane Monolayers

    SciTech Connect

    Douglas,J.; Efimenko, K.; Fischer, D.; Phelan, F.; Genzer, J.

    2007-01-01

    Wavefronts associated with reaction-diffusion and self-assembly processes are ubiquitous in the natural world. For example, propagating fronts arise in crystallization and diverse other thermodynamic ordering processes, in polymerization fronts involved in cell movement and division, as well as in the competitive social interactions and population dynamics of animals at much larger scales. Although it is often claimed that self-sustaining or autocatalytic front propagation is well described by mean-field 'reaction-diffusion' or 'phase field' ordering models, it has recently become appreciated from simulations and theoretical arguments that fluctuation effects in lower spatial dimensions can lead to appreciable deviations from the classical mean-field theory (MFT) of this type of front propagation. The present work explores these fluctuation effects in a real physical system. In particular, we consider a high-resolution near-edge x-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy (NEXAFS) study of the spontaneous frontal self-assembly of organosilane (OS) molecules into self-assembled monolayer (SAM) surface-energy gradients on oxidized silicon wafers. We find that these layers organize from the wafer edge as propagating wavefronts having well defined velocities. In accordance with two-dimensional simulations of this type of front propagation that take fluctuation effects into account, we find that the interfacial widths w(t) of these SAM self-assembly fronts exhibit a power-law broadening in time, w(t) {approx} t{sup {beta}}, rather than the constant width predicted by MFT. Moreover, the observed exponent values accord rather well with previous simulation and theoretical estimates. These observations have significant implications for diverse types of ordering fronts that occur under confinement conditions in biological or materials-processing contexts.

  1. Self-Assembly Protein Nanogels for Safer Cancer Immunotherapy.

    PubMed

    Purwada, Alberto; Tian, Ye F; Huang, Weishan; Rohrbach, Kathleen M; Deol, Simrita; August, Avery; Singh, Ankur

    2016-06-01

    Soluble antigen-based cancer vaccines have poor retention in tissues along with suboptimal antigen processing by dendritic cells. Multiple booster doses are often needed, leading to dose-limiting systemic toxicity. A versatile, immunomodulatory, self-assembly protein nanogel vaccine is reported that induces robust immune cell response at lower antigen doses than soluble antigens, an important step towards biomaterials-based safer immunotherapy approaches. PMID:27100566

  2. Self-assembled containers based on extended tetrathiafulvalene.

    PubMed

    Bivaud, Sébastien; Goeb, Sébastien; Croué, Vincent; Dron, Paul I; Allain, Magali; Sallé, Marc

    2013-07-10

    Two original self-assembled containers constituted each by six electroactive subunits are described. They are synthesized from a concave tetratopic π-extended tetrathiafulvalene ligand bearing four pyridyl units and cis-M(dppf)(OTf)2 (M = Pd or Pt; dppf = 1,1'-bis(diphenylphosphino)ferrocene; OTf = trifluoromethane-sulfonate) complexes. Both fully characterized assemblies present an oblate spheroidal cavity that can incorporate one perylene molecule. PMID:23795694

  3. The self-assembly of a camptothecin-lysine nanotube.

    PubMed

    Sun, Yuan; Shieh, Aileen; Kim, Se Hye; King, Samantha; Kim, Anne; Sun, Hui-Lung; Croce, Carlo M; Parquette, Jon R

    2016-06-15

    A simple, low molecular weight camptothecin-lysine conjugate is reported to self-assemble into nanotubes with diameters of 70-100nm and a drug loading level of 60.5%. The nanotubes exhibited promising in vitro cytotoxicity against cancer cell lines A549, NCI-H460 and NCI-H23. The release of active camptothecin was highly dependent on conjugate concentration, temperature and pH of the solution. PMID:27156772

  4. Self-assembly of a 5-fluorouracil-dipeptide hydrogel.

    PubMed

    Sun, Yuan; Kaplan, Jonah A; Shieh, Aileen; Sun, Hui-Lung; Croce, Carlo M; Grinstaff, Mark W; Parquette, Jon R

    2016-04-18

    The self-assembly of 5-fluorouracil dilysine conjugates into self-supporting hydrogels, comprised of entangled nanofibers or rigid nanotubes with diameters of 10 and 16 nm, respectively, is reported. The rate of release of 5-Fu from the conjugates was highly dependent on concentration in solution, whereas, release from the fully formed hydrogels was significantly slower. The 5-Fu conjugate also exhibited promising in vitro cytotoxicity against human tumor cell lines A549, H460 and H23. PMID:26996124

  5. Lighting up cells with lanthanide self-assembled helicates

    PubMed Central

    Bünzli, Jean-Claude G.

    2013-01-01

    Lanthanide bioprobes and bioconjugates are ideal luminescent stains in view of their low propensity to photobleaching, sharp emission lines and long excited state lifetimes permitting time-resolved detection for enhanced sensitivity. We show here how the interplay between physical, chemical and biochemical properties allied to microfluidics engineering leads to self-assembled dinuclear lanthanide luminescent probes illuminating live cells and selectively detecting biomarkers expressed by cancerous human breast cells. PMID:24511387

  6. Next generation high density self assembling functional protein arrays

    PubMed Central

    Ramachandran, Niroshan; Raphael, Jacob V.; Hainsworth, Eugenie; Demirkan, Gokhan; Fuentes, Manuel G.; Rolfs, Andreas; Hu, Yanhui; LaBaer, Joshua

    2009-01-01

    We report a high-density self assembling protein microarray that displays thousands of proteins, produced and captured in situ from immobilized cDNA templates. Over 1500 unique cDNAs were tested with > 90% success with nearly all proteins displaying yields within 2 fold of the mean, minimal sample variation and good day to day reproducibility. The displayed proteins revealed selective protein interactions. This method will enable various experimental approaches to study protein function in high throughput. PMID:18469824

  7. Sequential programmable self-assembly: Role of cooperative interactions

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Jonathan D. Halverson; Tkachenko, Alexei V.

    2016-03-04

    Here, we propose a general strategy of “sequential programmable self-assembly” that enables a bottom-up design of arbitrary multi-particle architectures on nano- and microscales. We show that a naive realization of this scheme, based on the pairwise additive interactions between particles, has fundamental limitations that lead to a relatively high error rate. This can be overcome by using cooperative interparticle binding. The cooperativity is a well known feature of many biochemical processes, responsible, e.g., for signaling and regulations in living systems. Here we propose to utilize a similar strategy for high precision self-assembly, and show that DNA-mediated interactions provide a convenientmore » platform for its implementation. In particular, we outline a specific design of a DNA-based complex which we call “DNA spider,” that acts as a smart interparticle linker and provides a built-in cooperativity of binding. We demonstrate versatility of the sequential self-assembly based on spider-functionalized particles by designing several mesostructures of increasing complexity and simulating their assembly process. This includes a number of finite and repeating structures, in particular, the so-called tetrahelix and its several derivatives. Due to its generality, this approach allows one to design and successfully self-assemble virtually any structure made of a “GEOMAG” magnetic construction toy, out of nanoparticles. According to our results, once the binding cooperativity is strong enough, the sequential self-assembly becomes essentially error-free.« less

  8. The position of hydrophobic residues tunes peptide self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Bortolini, Christian; Liu, Lei; Gronewold, Thomas M A; Wang, Chen; Besenbacher, Flemming; Dong, Mingdong

    2014-08-21

    The final structure and properties of synthetic peptides mainly depend on their sequence composition and experimental conditions. This work demonstrates that a variation in the positions of hydrophobic residues within a peptide sequence can tune the self-assembly. Techniques employed are atomic force microscopy, transmission electron microscopy and an innovative method based on surface acoustic waves. In addition, a systematic investigation on pH dependence was carried out by utilizing constant experimental parameters. PMID:24995505

  9. A Cucurbituril Derivative That Exhibits Cation-Modulated Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Ustrnul, Lukas; Babiak, Michal; Kulhanek, Petr; Sindelar, Vladimir

    2016-07-15

    Cucurbiturils are the most potent artificial receptors known for many organic molecules in water. However, little is known about their supramolecular chemistry in organic solvents. Here we present a new cucurbituril derivative, 1, and investigate its supramolecular properties in methanol. The macrocycle resembles a five-membered cucurbituril in which four glycoluril units are replaced with propanediurea. Macrocycle 1 can bind to one cation such as potassium or anilinium via each of its opposed portals. The stability of these complexes in methanol at nanomolar concentrations exceeds that of complexes between metal cations and crown ethers. Moreover, macrocycle 1 forms a self-assembled tetrameric aggregate in the solid state and in methanol. The tetramer is stabilized by the addition of up to 1 equiv of a cation but is fully disassembled in the presence of 2 equiv of the cation. Cations can thus be used to tune the aggregation of 1 in solution. PMID:27308961

  10. Mechanical Self-Assembly of a Strain-Engineered Flexible Layer: Wrinkling, Rolling, and Twisting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Zi; Huang, Gaoshan; Trase, Ian; Han, Xiaomin; Mei, Yongfeng

    2016-01-01

    Self-shaping of curved structures, especially those involving flexible thin layers, is attracting increasing attention because of their broad potential applications in, e.g., nanoelectromechanical andmicroelectromechanical systems, sensors, artificial skins, stretchable electronics, robotics, and drug delivery. Here, we provide an overview of recent experimental, theoretical, and computational studies on the mechanical self-assembly of strain-engineered thin layers, with an emphasis on systems in which the competition between bending and stretching energy gives rise to a variety of deformations, such as wrinkling, rolling, and twisting. We address the principle of mechanical instabilities, which is often manifested in wrinkling or multistability of strain-engineered thin layers. The principles of shape selection and transition in helical ribbons are also systematically examined. We hope that a more comprehensive understanding of the mechanical principles underlying these rich phenomena can foster the development of techniques for manufacturing functional three-dimensional structures on demand for a broad spectrum of engineering applications.

  11. Self-assembled magnetic filter for highly efficient immunomagnetic separation.

    PubMed

    Issadore, David; Shao, Huilin; Chung, Jaehoon; Newton, Andita; Pittet, Mikael; Weissleder, Ralph; Lee, Hakho

    2011-01-01

    We have developed a compact and inexpensive microfluidic chip, the self-assembled magnetic filter, to efficiently remove magnetically tagged cells from suspension. The self-assembled magnetic filter consists of a microfluidic channel built directly above a self-assembled NdFeB magnet. Micrometre-sized grains of NdFeB assemble to form alternating magnetic dipoles, creating a magnetic field with a very strong magnitude B (from the material) and field gradient ▽B (from the configuration) in the microfluidic channel. The magnetic force imparted on magnetic beads is measured to be comparable to state-of-the-art microfabricated magnets, allowing for efficient separations to be performed in a compact, simple device. The efficiency of the magnetic filter is characterized by sorting non-magnetic (polystyrene) beads from magnetic beads (iron oxide). The filter enriches the population of non-magnetic beads to magnetic beads by a factor of >10(5) with a recovery rate of 90% at 1 mL h(-1). The utility of the magnetic filter is demonstrated with a microfluidic device that sorts tumor cells from leukocytes using negative immunomagnetic selection, and concentrates the tumor cells on an integrated membrane filter for optical detection. PMID:20949198

  12. Self-assembled amyloid fibrils with controllable conformational heterogeneity.

    PubMed

    Lee, Gyudo; Lee, Wonseok; Lee, Hyungbeen; Lee, Chang Young; Eom, Kilho; Kwon, Taeyun

    2015-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils are a hallmark of neurodegenerative diseases and exhibit a conformational diversity that governs their pathological functions. Despite recent findings concerning the pathological role of their conformational diversity, the way in which the heterogeneous conformations of amyloid fibrils can be formed has remained elusive. Here, we show that microwave-assisted chemistry affects the self-assembly process of amyloid fibril formation, which results in their conformational heterogeneity. In particular, microwave-assisted chemistry allows for delicate control of the thermodynamics of the self-assembly process, which enabled us to tune the molecular structure of β-lactoglobulin amyloid fibrils. The heterogeneous conformations of amyloid fibrils, which can be tuned with microwave-assisted chemistry, are attributed to the microwave-driven thermal energy affecting the electrostatic interaction during the self-assembly process. Our study demonstrates how microwave-assisted chemistry can be used to gain insight into the origin of conformational heterogeneity of amyloid fibrils as well as the design principles showing how the molecular structures of amyloid fibrils can be controlled. PMID:26592772

  13. Modeling the self-assembly of nanoparticle and nanorod superlattices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Titov, Alexey; Kral, Petr

    2008-03-01

    Coloidal semiconductor PbSe/CdSE nanoparticles (NP) of the sizes of 3-10 nm can self-assemble in fcc, hcp and single-hexagonal (sh) superlattices [1]. We model the Coulombic, van der Waals and steric interactions between these NPs to understand the exact conditions under which they can self-assemble in these lattice structures. Our simulations show that non-local dipoles of the NPs and their screening by the conducting substrate are both crucial for the sh lattice formation. We model analogously the self-assembly of semiconducting CdSe nanorods (NRs), realized also in the presence of electric fields [2], and the binary semiconducting-metallic nanoparticle superlattices [3]. [1] D. Talapin, E. Shevchenko, C. B. Murray, A. Titov and P. Kr'al, Nano Letters 7, 1213 (2007). [2] A. Titov and P. Kr'al, submitted. [3] E. V. Shevchenko, D. V. Talapin, N. A. Kotov, S. O'Brien, C. B. Murray, Nature 439, 55-59 (2006).

  14. Multilayer block copolymer meshes by orthogonal self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Tavakkoli K. G., Amir; Nicaise, Samuel M.; Gadelrab, Karim R.; Alexander-Katz, Alfredo; Ross, Caroline A.; Berggren, Karl K.

    2016-01-01

    Continued scaling-down of lithographic-pattern feature sizes has brought templated self-assembly of block copolymers (BCPs) into the forefront of nanofabrication research. Technologies now exist that facilitate significant control over otherwise unorganized assembly of BCP microdomains to form both long-range and locally complex monolayer patterns. In contrast, the extension of this control into multilayers or 3D structures of BCP microdomains remains limited, despite the possible technological applications in next-generation devices. Here, we develop and analyse an orthogonal self-assembly method in which multiple layers of distinct-molecular-weight BCPs naturally produce nanomesh structures of cylindrical microdomains without requiring layer-by-layer alignment or high-resolution lithographic templating. The mechanisms for orthogonal self-assembly are investigated with both experiment and simulation, and we determine that the control over height and chemical preference of templates are critical process parameters. The method is employed to produce nanomeshes with the shapes of circles and Y-intersections, and is extended to produce three layers of orthogonally oriented cylinders. PMID:26796218

  15. Self-assembled amyloid fibrils with controllable conformational heterogeneity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Gyudo; Lee, Wonseok; Lee, Hyungbeen; Lee, Chang Young; Eom, Kilho; Kwon, Taeyun

    2015-11-01

    Amyloid fibrils are a hallmark of neurodegenerative diseases and exhibit a conformational diversity that governs their pathological functions. Despite recent findings concerning the pathological role of their conformational diversity, the way in which the heterogeneous conformations of amyloid fibrils can be formed has remained elusive. Here, we show that microwave-assisted chemistry affects the self-assembly process of amyloid fibril formation, which results in their conformational heterogeneity. In particular, microwave-assisted chemistry allows for delicate control of the thermodynamics of the self-assembly process, which enabled us to tune the molecular structure of β-lactoglobulin amyloid fibrils. The heterogeneous conformations of amyloid fibrils, which can be tuned with microwave-assisted chemistry, are attributed to the microwave-driven thermal energy affecting the electrostatic interaction during the self-assembly process. Our study demonstrates how microwave-assisted chemistry can be used to gain insight into the origin of conformational heterogeneity of amyloid fibrils as well as the design principles showing how the molecular structures of amyloid fibrils can be controlled.

  16. Dynamic self-assembly and control of microfluidic particle crystals

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Wonhee; Amini, Hamed; Stone, Howard A.; Di Carlo, Dino

    2010-01-01

    Engineered two-phase microfluidic systems have recently shown promise for computation, encryption, and biological processing. For many of these systems, complex control of dispersed-phase frequency and switching is enabled by nonlinearities associated with interfacial stresses. Introducing nonlinearity associated with fluid inertia has recently been identified as an easy to implement strategy to control two-phase (solid-liquid) microscale flows. By taking advantage of inertial effects we demonstrate controllable self-assembling particle systems, uncover dynamics suggesting a unique mechanism of dynamic self-assembly, and establish a framework for engineering microfluidic structures with the possibility of spatial frequency filtering. Focusing on the dynamics of the particle–particle interactions reveals a mechanism for the dynamic self-assembly process; inertial lift forces and a parabolic flow field act together to stabilize interparticle spacings that otherwise would diverge to infinity due to viscous disturbance flows. The interplay of the repulsive viscous interaction and inertial lift also allow us to design and implement microfluidic structures that irreversibly change interparticle spacing, similar to a low-pass filter. Although often not considered at the microscale, nonlinearity due to inertia can provide a platform for high-throughput passive control of particle positions in all directions, which will be useful for applications in flow cytometry, tissue engineering, and metamaterial synthesis. PMID:21149674

  17. Fractal intermediates in the self-assembly of silicatein filaments

    PubMed Central

    Murr, Meredith M.; Morse, Daniel E.

    2005-01-01

    Silicateins are proteins with catalytic, structure-directing activity that are responsible for silica biosynthesis in certain sponges; they are the constituents of macroscopic protein filaments that are found occluded within the silica needles made by Tethya aurantia. Self-assembly of the silicatein monomers and oligomers is shown to form fibrous structures by a mechanism that is fundamentally different from any previously described filament-assembly process. This assembly proceeds through the formation of diffusion-limited, fractally patterned aggregates on the path to filament formation. The driving force for this self-assembly is suggested to be entropic, mediated by the interaction of hydrophobic patches on the surfaces of the silicatein subunits that are not found on highly homologous congeners that do not form filaments. Our results are consistent with a model in which silicatein monomers associate into oligomers that are stabilized by intermolecular disulfide bonds. These oligomeric units assemble into a fractal network that subsequently condenses and organizes into a filamentous structure. These results represent a potentially general mechanism for protein fiber self-assembly. PMID:16091468

  18. Molecular pathways for defect annihilation in directed self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Hur, Su-Mi; Thapar, Vikram; Ramírez-Hernández, Abelardo; Khaira, Gurdaman; Segal-Peretz, Tamar; Rincon-Delgadillo, Paulina A; Li, Weihua; Müller, Marcus; Nealey, Paul F; de Pablo, Juan J

    2015-11-17

    Over the last few years, the directed self-assembly of block copolymers by surface patterns has transitioned from academic curiosity to viable contender for commercial fabrication of next-generation nanocircuits by lithography. Recently, it has become apparent that kinetics, and not only thermodynamics, plays a key role for the ability of a polymeric material to self-assemble into a perfect, defect-free ordered state. Perfection, in this context, implies not more than one defect, with characteristic dimensions on the order of 5 nm, over a sample area as large as 100 cm(2). In this work, we identify the key pathways and the corresponding free energy barriers for eliminating defects, and we demonstrate that an extraordinarily large thermodynamic driving force is not necessarily sufficient for their removal. By adopting a concerted computational and experimental approach, we explain the molecular origins of these barriers and how they depend on material characteristics, and we propose strategies designed to overcome them. The validity of our conclusions for industrially relevant patterning processes is established by relying on instruments and assembly lines that are only available at state-of-the-art fabrication facilities, and, through this confluence of fundamental and applied research, we are able to discern the evolution of morphology at the smallest relevant length scales-a handful of nanometers-and present a view of defect annihilation in directed self-assembly at an unprecedented level of detail. PMID:26515095

  19. Evolutionary dynamics in a simple model of self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnston, Iain G.; Ahnert, Sebastian E.; Doye, Jonathan P. K.; Louis, Ard A.

    2011-06-01

    We investigate the evolutionary dynamics of an idealized model for the robust self-assembly of two-dimensional structures called polyominoes. The model includes rules that encode interactions between sets of square tiles that drive the self-assembly process. The relationship between the model’s rule set and its resulting self-assembled structure can be viewed as a genotype-phenotype map and incorporated into a genetic algorithm. The rule sets evolve under selection for specified target structures. The corresponding complex fitness landscape generates rich evolutionary dynamics as a function of parameters such as the population size, search space size, mutation rate, and method of recombination. Furthermore, these systems are simple enough that in some cases the associated model genome space can be completely characterized, shedding light on how the evolutionary dynamics depends on the detailed structure of the fitness landscape. Finally, we apply the model to study the emergence of the preference for dihedral over cyclic symmetry observed for homomeric protein tetramers.

  20. Simulation Methods for Self-Assembled Polymers and Rings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kindt, James T.

    2003-11-01

    New off-lattice grand canonical Monte Carlo simulation methods have been developed and used to model the equilibrium structure and phase diagrams of equilibrium polymers and rings. A scheme called Polydisperse Insertion, Removal, and Resizing (PDIRR) is used to accelerate the equilibration of the size distribution of self-assembled aggregates. This method allows the insertion or removal of aggregates (e.g., chains) containing an arbitrary number of monomers in a single Monte Carlo move, or the re-sizing of an existing aggregate. For the equilibrium polymer model under semi-dilute conditions, a several-fold increase in equilibration rate compared with single-monomer moves is observed, facilitating the study of the isotropic-nematic transition of semiflexible, self-assembled chains. Combined with the pivot-coupled GCMC method for ring simulation, the PDIRR approach also allows the phenomenological simulation of a polydisperse equilibrium phase of rings, 2-dimensional fluid domains, or flat self-assembled disks in three dimensions.

  1. Self-assembled amyloid fibrils with controllable conformational heterogeneity

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Gyudo; Lee, Wonseok; Lee, Hyungbeen; Lee, Chang Young; Eom, Kilho; Kwon, Taeyun

    2015-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils are a hallmark of neurodegenerative diseases and exhibit a conformational diversity that governs their pathological functions. Despite recent findings concerning the pathological role of their conformational diversity, the way in which the heterogeneous conformations of amyloid fibrils can be formed has remained elusive. Here, we show that microwave-assisted chemistry affects the self-assembly process of amyloid fibril formation, which results in their conformational heterogeneity. In particular, microwave-assisted chemistry allows for delicate control of the thermodynamics of the self-assembly process, which enabled us to tune the molecular structure of β-lactoglobulin amyloid fibrils. The heterogeneous conformations of amyloid fibrils, which can be tuned with microwave-assisted chemistry, are attributed to the microwave-driven thermal energy affecting the electrostatic interaction during the self-assembly process. Our study demonstrates how microwave-assisted chemistry can be used to gain insight into the origin of conformational heterogeneity of amyloid fibrils as well as the design principles showing how the molecular structures of amyloid fibrils can be controlled. PMID:26592772

  2. Multilayer block copolymer meshes by orthogonal self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tavakkoli K. G., Amir; Nicaise, Samuel M.; Gadelrab, Karim R.; Alexander-Katz, Alfredo; Ross, Caroline A.; Berggren, Karl K.

    2016-01-01

    Continued scaling-down of lithographic-pattern feature sizes has brought templated self-assembly of block copolymers (BCPs) into the forefront of nanofabrication research. Technologies now exist that facilitate significant control over otherwise unorganized assembly of BCP microdomains to form both long-range and locally complex monolayer patterns. In contrast, the extension of this control into multilayers or 3D structures of BCP microdomains remains limited, despite the possible technological applications in next-generation devices. Here, we develop and analyse an orthogonal self-assembly method in which multiple layers of distinct-molecular-weight BCPs naturally produce nanomesh structures of cylindrical microdomains without requiring layer-by-layer alignment or high-resolution lithographic templating. The mechanisms for orthogonal self-assembly are investigated with both experiment and simulation, and we determine that the control over height and chemical preference of templates are critical process parameters. The method is employed to produce nanomeshes with the shapes of circles and Y-intersections, and is extended to produce three layers of orthogonally oriented cylinders.

  3. Materials self-assembly and fabrication in confined spaces

    SciTech Connect

    Ramanathan, Nathan Muruganathan; Kilbey, II, S Michael; Ji, Dr. Qingmin; Hill, Dr. Jonathan P; Ariga, Katsuhiko

    2012-01-01

    Molecular assemblies have been mainly researched in open spaces for long time. However, recent researches have revealed that there are many interesting aspects remained in self-assemblies in confined spaces. Molecular association within nanospaces such as mesoporous materials provide unusual phenomena based on highly restricted molecular motions. Current research endeavors in materials science and technology are focused on developing either new class of materials or materials with novel/multiple functionalities which is often achived via molecular assembly in confined spaces. Template synthesis and guided assemblies are distinguishable examples for molecular assembly in confined spaces. So far, different aspects of molecular confinements are discussed separately. In this review, the focus is specifically to bring some potential developments in various aspects of confined spaces for molecular self-assembly under one roof. We arrange the sections in this review based on the nature of the confinements; accordingly the topological/geometrical confinements, chemical and biological confinements, and confinements within thin film, respectively. Following these sections, molecular confinements for practical applications are shortly described in order to show connections of these scientific aspects with possible practical uses. One of the most important facts is that the self-assembly in confined spaces stands at meeting points of top-down and bottom-up fabrications, which would be an ultimate key to push the limits of nanotechnology and nanoscience.

  4. Chiral Perylene Materials by Ionic Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Echue, Geraldine; Hamley, Ian; Lloyd Jones, Guy C; Faul, Charl F J

    2016-09-01

    Two chiral complexes (1-SDS and 1-SDBS) were prepared via the ionic self-assembly of a chiral perylene diimide tecton with oppositely charged surfactants. The effect of surfactant tail architecture on the self-assembly properties and supramolecular structure was investigated in detail using UV-vis, IR, circular dichroism, light microscopy, X-ray diffraction studies, and electron microscopy. The results obtained revealed the molecular chirality of the parent perylene tecton could be translated into supramolecular helical chirality of the resulting complexes via primary ionic interactions through careful choice of solvent and concentration. Differing solvent-dependent aggregation behavior was observed for these complexes as a result of the different possible noncovalent interactions via the surfactant alkyl tails. The results presented in this study demonstrate that ionic self-assembly (ISA) is a facile strategy for the production of chiral supramolecular materials based on perylene diimides. The structure-function relationship is easily explored here due to the wide selection and easy availability of common surfactants. PMID:27486788

  5. Quantitative Characterization of Surface Self-Assembly Imaging Using Shapelets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abukhdeir, Nasser Mohieddin; Suderman, Robert; Lizotte, Daniel J.

    Microscopy and imaging of surface self-assembly phenomena have advanced significantly over the past decade. In order to determine structure/property relationships robust automated analysis of the resulting images is required, but has not advanced at an equally rapid pace. Recently, quantitative characterization techniques have been developed and applied, such as using bond-orientational order (BOO) theory. BOO-based methods have significant limitations in that they do not provide pixel-level resolution and are not robust in the presence of measurement noise. In this work, a fundamentally different method for automated quantitative characterization of surface self-assembly imaging is presented which uses a family of localized functions called ``shapelets''. The method is presented and applied to quantitative characterization of stripe and hexagonal patterns which are frequently observed in surface self-assembly. The shapelet-based method is shown to be general, highly accurate, and robust in the presence of measurement noise. It is able to efficiently determine local pattern characteristics such as pattern strength and orientation for the determination of structure/property relationships. This work was made possible by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and Compute Ontario.

  6. Molecular pathways for defect annihilation in directed self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Hur, Su-Mi; Thapar, Vikram; Ramírez-Hernández, Abelardo; Khaira, Gurdaman; Segal-Peretz, Tamar; Rincon-Delgadillo, Paulina A.; Li, Weihua; Müller, Marcus; Nealey, Paul F.; de Pablo, Juan J.

    2015-01-01

    Over the last few years, the directed self-assembly of block copolymers by surface patterns has transitioned from academic curiosity to viable contender for commercial fabrication of next-generation nanocircuits by lithography. Recently, it has become apparent that kinetics, and not only thermodynamics, plays a key role for the ability of a polymeric material to self-assemble into a perfect, defect-free ordered state. Perfection, in this context, implies not more than one defect, with characteristic dimensions on the order of 5 nm, over a sample area as large as 100 cm2. In this work, we identify the key pathways and the corresponding free energy barriers for eliminating defects, and we demonstrate that an extraordinarily large thermodynamic driving force is not necessarily sufficient for their removal. By adopting a concerted computational and experimental approach, we explain the molecular origins of these barriers and how they depend on material characteristics, and we propose strategies designed to overcome them. The validity of our conclusions for industrially relevant patterning processes is established by relying on instruments and assembly lines that are only available at state-of-the-art fabrication facilities, and, through this confluence of fundamental and applied research, we are able to discern the evolution of morphology at the smallest relevant length scales—a handful of nanometers—and present a view of defect annihilation in directed self-assembly at an unprecedented level of detail. PMID:26515095

  7. Polymer adsorption-driven self-assembly of nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Chakraborty, A K; Golumbfskie, A J

    2001-01-01

    Driven by prospective applications, there is much interest in developing materials that can perform specific functions in response to external conditions. One way to design such materials is to create systems which, in response to external inputs, can self-assemble to form structures that are functionally useful. This review focuses on the principles that can be employed to design macromolecules that when presented with an appropriate two-dimensional surface, will self-assemble to form nanostructures that may be functionally useful. We discuss three specific examples: (a) biomimetic recognition between polymers and patterned surfaces. (b) control and manipulation of nanomechanical motion generated by biopolymer adsorption and binding, and (c) creation of patterned nanostructuctures by exposing molten diblock copolymers to patterned surfaces. The discussion serves to illustrate how polymer sequence can be manipulated to affect self-assembly characteristics near adsorbing surfaces. The focus of this review is on theoretical and computational work aimed toward elucidating the principles underlying the phenomena pertinent to the three topics noted above. However, synergistic experiments are also described in the appropriate context. PMID:11326074

  8. Molecular pathways for defect annihilation in directed self-assembly.

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Hur, Su-Mi; Thapar, Vikram; Ramirez-Hernandez, Abelardo; Khaira, Gurdaman S.; Segal-Peretz, Tamar; Rincon-Delgadillo, Paulina A.; Li, Weihua; Muller, Marcus; Nealey, Paul F.; de Pablo, Juan J.

    2015-11-17

    Over the last few years, the directed self-assembly of block copolymers by surface patterns has transitioned from academic curiosity to viable contender for commercial fabrication of next-generation nanocircuits by lithography. Recently, it has become apparent that kinetics, and not only thermodynamics, plays a key role for the ability of a polymeric material to self-assemble into a perfect, defect-free ordered state. Perfection, in this context, implies not more than one defect, with characteristic dimensions on the order of 5 nm, over a sample area as large as 100 cm2. In this work, we identify the key pathways and the corresponding free-energymore » barriers for eliminating defects, and we demonstrate that an extraordinarily large thermodynamic driving force is not necessarily sufficient for their removal. By adopting a concerted computational and experimental approach, we explain the molecular origins of these barriers, how they depend on material characteristics, and we propose strategies designed to over-come them. The validity of our conclusions for industrially-relevant patterning processes is established by relying on instruments and assembly lines that are only available at state-of-the-art fabrication facilities and, through this confluence of fundamental and applied research, we are able to discern the evolution of morphology at the smallest relevant length scales - a handful of nanometers -, and present a view of defect annihilation in directed self-assembly at an unprecedented level of detail.« less

  9. Engineering hierarchical nanostructures by elastocapillary self-assembly.

    PubMed

    De Volder, Michaël; Hart, A John

    2013-02-25

    Surfaces coated with nanoscale filaments such as silicon nanowires and carbon nanotubes are potentially compelling for high-performance battery and capacitor electrodes, photovoltaics, electrical interconnects, substrates for engineered cell growth, dry adhesives, and other smart materials. However, many of these applications require a wet environment or involve wet processing during their synthesis. The capillary forces introduced by these wet environments can lead to undesirable aggregation of nanoscale filaments, but control of capillary forces can enable manipulation of the filaments into discrete aggregates and novel hierarchical structures. Recent studies suggest that the elastocapillary self-assembly of nanofilaments can be a versatile and scalable means to build complex and robust surface architectures. To enable a wider understanding and use of elastocapillary self-assembly as a fabrication technology, we give an overview of the underlying fundamentals and classify typical implementations and surface designs for nanowires, nanotubes, and nanopillars made from a wide variety of materials. Finally, we discuss exemplary applications and future opportunities to realize new engineered surfaces by the elastocapillary self-assembly of nanofilaments. PMID:23339106

  10. Equilibrium self-assembly of small RNA viruses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruinsma, R. F.; Comas-Garcia, M.; Garmann, R. F.; Grosberg, A. Y.

    2016-03-01

    We propose a description for the quasiequilibrium self-assembly of small, single-stranded (ss) RNA viruses whose capsid proteins (CPs) have flexible, positively charged, disordered tails that associate with the negatively charged RNA genome molecules. We describe the assembly of such viruses as the interplay between two coupled phase-transition-like events: the formation of the protein shell (the capsid) by CPs and the condensation of a large ss viral RNA molecule. Electrostatic repulsion between the CPs competes with attractive hydrophobic interactions and attractive interaction between neutralized RNA segments mediated by the tail groups. An assembly diagram is derived in terms of the strength of attractive interactions between CPs and between CPs and the RNA molecules. It is compared with the results of recent studies of viral assembly. We demonstrate that the conventional theory of self-assembly, which does describe the assembly of empty capsids, is in general not applicable to the self-assembly of RNA-encapsidating virions.

  11. Self-assembled elastin-like polypeptide particles.

    PubMed

    Osborne, Jill L; Farmer, Robin; Woodhouse, Kimberly A

    2008-01-01

    In this work, the self-assembly of a recombinant elastin-based block copolymer containing both hydrophobic and cross-linking domains from the human elastin protein was investigated. The particle formation and dynamic behavior were characterized using inverted microscopy and dynamic light scattering. The morphology and stability were evaluated using scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Above a critical temperature the molecules self-assembled into a bimodal distribution of nano- and micron-sized particles. The larger particles increased in size through coalescence. Micron-sized particle formation appeared largely reversible, although a self-assembly/disassembly hysteresis was observed. At high polyethylene glycol (PEG) concentrations particle coalescence and settling were reduced, particle stability seemed enhanced and PEG coated the particles. Particle stabilization was also achieved through covalent cross-linking using glutaraldehyde. This study laid the foundation for optimization of particle size and stability through modification of the solvent system and has shown that this family of elastin-based polypeptides holds potential for use as particulate drug carriers. PMID:17881311

  12. Molecular Motions in Functional Self-Assembled Nanostructures

    PubMed Central

    Dhotel, Alexandre; Chen, Ziguang; Delbreilh, Laurent; Youssef, Boulos; Saiter, Jean-Marc; Tan, Li

    2013-01-01

    The construction of “smart” materials able to perform specific functions at the molecular scale through the application of various stimuli is highly attractive but still challenging. The most recent applications indicate that the outstanding flexibility of self-assembled architectures can be employed as a powerful tool for the development of innovative molecular devices, functional surfaces and smart nanomaterials. Structural flexibility of these materials is known to be conferred by weak intermolecular forces involved in self-assembly strategies. However, some fundamental mechanisms responsible for conformational lability remain unexplored. Furthermore, the role played by stronger bonds, such as coordination, ionic and covalent bonding, is sometimes neglected while they can be employed readily to produce mechanically robust but also chemically reversible structures. In this review, recent applications of structural flexibility and molecular motions in self-assembled nanostructures are discussed. Special focus is given to advanced materials exhibiting significant performance changes after an external stimulus is applied, such as light exposure, pH variation, heat treatment or electromagnetic field. The crucial role played by strong intra- and weak intermolecular interactions on structural lability and responsiveness is highlighted. PMID:23348927

  13. Algorithmic Self-Assembly of DNA Sierpinski Triangles

    PubMed Central

    2004-01-01

    Algorithms and information, fundamental to technological and biological organization, are also an essential aspect of many elementary physical phenomena, such as molecular self-assembly. Here we report the molecular realization, using two-dimensional self-assembly of DNA tiles, of a cellular automaton whose update rule computes the binary function XOR and thus fabricates a fractal pattern—a Sierpinski triangle—as it grows. To achieve this, abstract tiles were translated into DNA tiles based on double-crossover motifs. Serving as input for the computation, long single-stranded DNA molecules were used to nucleate growth of tiles into algorithmic crystals. For both of two independent molecular realizations, atomic force microscopy revealed recognizable Sierpinski triangles containing 100–200 correct tiles. Error rates during assembly appear to range from 1% to 10%. Although imperfect, the growth of Sierpinski triangles demonstrates all the necessary mechanisms for the molecular implementation of arbitrary cellular automata. This shows that engineered DNA self-assembly can be treated as a Turing-universal biomolecular system, capable of implementing any desired algorithm for computation or construction tasks. PMID:15583715

  14. Molecular pathways for defect annihilation in directed self-assembly.

    SciTech Connect

    Hur, Su-Mi; Thapar, Vikram; Ramirez-Hernandez, Abelardo; Khaira, Gurdaman S.; Segal-Peretz, Tamar; Rincon-Delgadillo, Paulina A.; Li, Weihua; Muller, Marcus; Nealey, Paul F.; de Pablo, Juan J.

    2015-11-17

    Over the last few years, the directed self-assembly of block copolymers by surface patterns has transitioned from academic curiosity to viable contender for commercial fabrication of next-generation nanocircuits by lithography. Recently, it has become apparent that kinetics, and not only thermodynamics, plays a key role for the ability of a polymeric material to self-assemble into a perfect, defect-free ordered state. Perfection, in this context, implies not more than one defect, with characteristic dimensions on the order of 5 nm, over a sample area as large as 100 cm2. In this work, we identify the key pathways and the corresponding free-energy barriers for eliminating defects, and we demonstrate that an extraordinarily large thermodynamic driving force is not necessarily sufficient for their removal. By adopting a concerted computational and experimental approach, we explain the molecular origins of these barriers, how they depend on material characteristics, and we propose strategies designed to over-come them. The validity of our conclusions for industrially-relevant patterning processes is established by relying on instruments and assembly lines that are only available at state-of-the-art fabrication facilities and, through this confluence of fundamental and applied research, we are able to discern the evolution of morphology at the smallest relevant length scales - a handful of nanometers -, and present a view of defect annihilation in directed self-assembly at an unprecedented level of detail.

  15. Three dimensional self-assembly at the nanoscale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gracias, D. H.

    2013-05-01

    At the nanoscale, three dimensional manipulation and assembly becomes extremely challenging and also cost prohibitive. Self-assembly provides an attractive and possibly the only highly parallel methodology to structure truly three dimensional patterned materials and devices at this size scale for applications in electronics, optics, robotics and medicine. This is a concise review along with a perspective of an important and exciting field in nanotechnology and is related to a Nanoengineering Pioneer Award that I received at this SPIE symposium for my contributions to the 3D selfassembly of nanostructures. I detail a historical account of 3D self-assembly and outline important developments in this area which is put into context with the larger research areas of 3D nanofabrication, assembly and nanomanufacturing. A focus in this review is on our work as it relates to the self-assembly with lithographically patterned units; this approach provides a means for heterogeneous integration of periodic, curved and angled nanostructures with precisely defined three dimensional patterns.

  16. Large-scale dissipative particle dynamics simulations of self-assembly amphiphilic systems†

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xuejin; Tang, Yu-Hang

    2014-01-01

    We present large-scale simulation results on the self-assembly of amphiphilic systems in bulk solution and under soft confinement. Self-assembled unilamellar and multilamellar vesicles are formed from amphiphilic molecules in bulk solution. The system is simulated by placing amphiphilic molecules inside large unilamellar vesicles (LUVs) and the dynamic soft confinement-induced self-assembled vesicles are investigated. Moreover, the self-assembly of sickle hemoglobin (HbS) is simulated in a crowded and fluctuating intracellular space and our results demonstrate that the HbS self-assemble into polymer fibers causing the LUV shape to be distorted. PMID:24938634

  17. Intramolecular energy transfer with butadiyne-linked chlorophyll and porphyrin dimer-faced, self-assembled prisms.

    SciTech Connect

    Kelley, R. F.; Lee, S. J.; Wilson, T. M.; Nakamura, Y.; Tiede, D. M.; Osuka, A.; Hupp, J. T.; Wasielewski, M. R.; SUF-USR; Chemical Sciences and Engineering Division; Northwestern Univ.; Kyoto Univ.

    2008-01-01

    The synthesis and photophysical properties of butadiyne-linked chlorophyll and porphyrin dimers in toluene solution and in several self-assembled prismatic structures are described. The butadiyne linkage between the 20-positions of the macrocycles results in new electronic transitions polarized along the long axes of the dimers. These transitions greatly increase the ability of these dimers to absorb the solar spectrum over a broad wavelength range. Femtosecond transient absorption spectroscopy reveals the relative rate of rotation of the macrocycles around the butadiyne bond joining them. Following addition of 3-fold symmetric, metal-coordinating ligands, both macrocyclic dimers self-assemble into prismatic structures in which the dimers comprise the faces of the prisms. These structures were confirmed by small-angle X-ray scattering experiments in solution using a synchrotron source. Photoexcitation of the prismatic assemblies reveals that efficient, through-space energy transfer occurs between the macrocyclic dimers within the prisms. The distance dependence of energy transfer between the faces of the prisms was observed by varying the size of the prismatic assemblies through the use of 3-fold symmetric ligands having arms with different lengths. These results show that self-assembly of discrete macrocyclic prisms provides a useful new strategy for controlling singlet exciton flow in antenna systems for artificial photosynthesis and solar cell applications.

  18. A Bloch equation approach to intensity dependent optical spectra of light harvesting complex II: excitation dependence of light harvesting complex II pump-probe spectra.

    PubMed

    Richter, Marten; Renger, Thomas; Knorr, Andreas

    2008-01-01

    On the basis of the recent progress in the resolution of the structure of the antenna light harvesting complex II (LHC II) of the photosystem II, we propose a microscopically motivated theory to predict excitation intensity-dependent spectra. We show that optical Bloch equations provide the means to include all 2( N ) excited states of an oligomer complex of N coupled two-level systems and analyze the effects of Pauli Blocking and exciton-exciton annihilation on pump-probe spectra. We use LHC Bloch equations for 14 Coulomb coupled two-level systems, which describe the S (0) and S (1) level of every chlorophyll molecule. All parameter introduced into the Hamiltonian are based on microscopic structure and a quantum chemical model. The derived Bloch equations describe not only linear absorption but also the intensity dependence of optical spectra in a regime where the interplay of Pauli Blocking effects as well as exciton-exciton annihilation effects are important. As an example, pump-probe spectra are discussed. The observed saturation of the spectra for high intensities can be viewed as a relaxation channel blockade on short time scales due to Pauli blocking. The theoretical investigation is useful for the interpretation of the experimental data, if the experimental conditions exceed the low intensity pump limit and effects like strong Pauli Blocking and exciton-exciton annihilation need to be considered. These effects become important when multiple excitations are generated by the pump pulse in the complex. PMID:17924202

  19. Molecular Self-Assembly into One-Dimensional Nanostructures

    PubMed Central

    PALMER, LIAM C.; STUPP, SAMUEL I.

    2008-01-01

    CONSPECTUS Self-assembly of small molecules into one-dimensional nanostructures offers many potential applications in electronically and biologically active materials. The recent advances discussed in this Account demonstrate how researchers can use the fundamental principles of supramolecular chemistry to craft the size, shape, and internal structure of nanoscale objects. In each system described here, we used atomic force microscopy (AFM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) to study the assembly morphology. Circular dichroism, nuclear magnetic resonance, infrared, and optical spectroscopy provided additional information about the self-assembly behavior in solution at the molecular level. Dendron rod–coil molecules self-assemble into flat or helical ribbons. They can incorporate electronically conductive groups and can be mineralized with inorganic semiconductors. To understand the relative importance of each segment in forming the supramolecular structure, we synthetically modified the dendron, rod, and coil portions. The self-assembly depended on the generation number of the dendron, the number of hydrogen-bonding functions, and the length of the rod and coil segments. We formed chiral helices using a dendron–rod–coil molecule prepared from an enantiomerically enriched coil. Because helical nanostructures are important targets for use in biomaterials, nonlinear optics, and stereoselective catalysis, researchers would like to precisely control their shape and size. Tripeptide-containing peptide lipid molecules assemble into straight or twisted nanofibers in organic solvents. As seen by AFM, the sterics of bulky end groups can tune the helical pitch of these peptide lipid nanofibers in organic solvents. Furthermore, we demonstrated the potential for pitch control using trans-to-cis photoisomerization of a terminal azobenzene group. Other molecules called peptide amphiphiles (PAs) are known to assemble in water into cylindrical nanostructures that

  20. Nanoscale templating and self-assembly of organic semiconductors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hulvat, James Francis

    Improvements in organic electronic materials could lead to novel device applications, ranging from large-area, flexible displays to light weight, plastic electronics. Progress on these applications would benefit from development of low-cost, aqueous, solution-based fabrication techniques for organic semiconductors. Supramolecular self-assembly enables molecules to organize in complex structures through non-covalent interactions. The nanoscale structure and aggregation of organic semiconductors influence conductivity, charge mobility and luminescence. We developed three approaches to enhance the performance of organic semiconductors through molecular self-assembly. The first uses a liquid crystalline (LC) template to mediate electrochemical polymerization of poly(3,4-ethyldioxythiophene) (PEDOT), a conducting polymer used for hole injection in organic light emitting diodes (OLED). Monomers were polymerized in the cylindrical, hydrophobic cores of a hexagonal, lyotropic LC formed by a non-ionic amphiphile in water, The templated, conducting polymer films exhibited anisotropic optical properties and increased conductivity as a direct result of the nanoscale, self-organized structure of the template. Another approach was used to control molecular order by preparing organic semiconductors that are themselves liquid crystalline. We developed a novel series of triblock oligo(phenylene vinylene) (OPV) amphiphiles that form thermotropic and lyotropic LC mesophases. The self-organized, layered structure of these mesophases influences aggregation of OPV, enhancing fluorescence in the liquid crystalline state compared with disordered films. These OPV-amphiphiles are the first example of a water-soluble oligo(phenylene vinylene) that can self-organize into aligned, well-ordered, highly fluorescent films. In a third system, a triblock, dendron rod-coil (DRC) molecule containing a quaterthiophene segment was prepared and its self-assembly and electronic properties investigated