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A Self-Assembling Protein Template for Constrained Synthesis and Patterning of Nanoparticle Arrays

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journal contribution
posted on 09.03.2005, 00:00 by R. Andrew McMillan, Jeanie Howard, Nestor J. Zaluzec, Hiromi K. Kagawa, Rakesh Mogul, Yi-Fen Li, Chad D. Paavola, Jonathan D. Trent
Self-assembling biomolecules that form highly ordered structures have attracted interest as potential alternatives to conventional lithographic processes for patterning materials. Here, we introduce a general technique for patterning nanoparticle arrays using two-dimensional crystals of genetically modified hollow protein structures called chaperonins. Constrained chemical synthesis of transition metal nanoparticles is initiated using templates functionalized with polyhistidine sequences. These nanoparticles are ordered into arrays because the template-driven synthesis is constrained by the nanoscale structure of the crystallized protein. We anticipate that this system may be used to pattern different classes of nanoparticles based on the growing library of sequences shown to specifically bind or direct the growth of materials.