Biomolecular recognition principles for bionanocombinatorics: An integrated approach to elucidate enthalpic and entropic factors

Zhenghua Tang, J. Pablo Palafox-Hernandez, Wing Cheung Law, Zak E. Hughes, Mark T. Swihart, Paras N. Prasad, Marc R. Knecht, Tiffany R. Walsh

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

112 Citations (Scopus)


Bionanocombinatorics is an emerging field that aims to use combinations of positionally encoded biomolecules and nanostructures to create materials and devices with unique properties or functions. The full potential of this new paradigm could be accessed by exploiting specific noncovalent interactions between diverse palettes of biomolecules and inorganic nanostructures. Advancement of this paradigm requires peptide sequences with desired binding characteristics that can be rationally designed, based upon fundamental, molecular-level understanding of biomolecule-inorganic nanoparticle interactions. Here, we introduce an integrated method for building this understanding using experimental measurements and advanced molecular simulation of the binding of peptide sequences to gold surfaces. From this integrated approach, the importance of entropically driven binding is quantitatively demonstrated, and the first design rules for creating both enthalpically and entropically driven nanomaterial-binding peptide sequences are developed. The approach presented here for gold is now being expanded in our laboratories to a range of inorganic nanomaterials and represents a key step toward establishing a bionanocombinatorics assembly paradigm based on noncovalent peptide-materials recognition.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9632-9646
Number of pages15
JournalACS Nano
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 26 Nov 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • bionanocombinatorics
  • nanoassembly
  • nanoparticles
  • peptides
  • simulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Engineering(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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