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Amyloids: Not Only Pathological Agents but Also Ordered Nanomaterials


  • E.G. acknowledge the support of the Israel Science Foundation (ISF).


Amyloid fibers constitute one of the most abundant and important naturally occurring self-associated assemblies. A variety of protein and peptide molecules with various amino acid sequences form these highly stable and well-organized assemblies under diverse conditions. These assemblies display phase states ranging from liquid crystals to rigid nanotubes. The potential applications of these supramolecular assemblies exceed those of synthetic polymers since the building blocks may introduce biological function in addition to mechanical properties. Here we review the structural characteristics of amyloidal supramolecular assemblies, their potential use as either natural or de novo designed sequences, and the range of applications that have been demonstrated so far.