Polymorphism and higher order structures of protein nanofibers from crude mixtures of fish lens crystallins: Toward useful materials

Authors

  • Jackie Healy,

    1. School of Biological Sciences, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
    2. Biomolecular Interaction Centre, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
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  • Kang Wong,

    1. Biomolecular Interaction Centre, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
    2. Department of Chemical and Process Engineering, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
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  • Elizabeth B. Sawyer,

    1. Bio21 Molecular Science and Biotechnology Institute and Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia
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  • Clement Roux,

    1. Biomolecular Interaction Centre, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
    2. MacDiarmid Institute, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
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  • Laura Domigan,

    1. School of Biological Sciences, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
    2. Biomolecular Interaction Centre, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
    3. MacDiarmid Institute, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
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  • Sally L. Gras,

    1. Bio21 Molecular Science and Biotechnology Institute and Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia
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  • Margaret Sunde,

    1. School of Molecular Bioscience, The University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
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  • Nigel G. Larsen,

    1. Biomolecular Interaction Centre, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
    2. Food Innovation, The New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Ltd, Lincoln, New Zealand
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  • Juliet Gerrard,

    1. School of Biological Sciences, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
    2. Biomolecular Interaction Centre, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
    3. MacDiarmid Institute, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
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  • Madhusudan Vasudevamurthy

    Corresponding author
    1. Biomolecular Interaction Centre, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
    2. Food Innovation, The New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Ltd, Lincoln, New Zealand
    • Biomolecular Interaction Centre, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
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  • This article was originally published online as an accepted preprint. The “Published Online” date corresponds to the preprint version. You can request a copy of the preprint by emailing the Biopolymers editorial office at biopolymers@wiley.com

Abstract

Protein nanofibers are emerging as useful biological nanomaterials for a number of applications, but to realize these applications requires a cheap and readily available source of fibril-forming protein material. We have identified fish lens crystallins as a feedstock for the production of protein nanofibers and report optimized methods for their production. Altering the conditions of formation leads to individual protein nanofibers assembling into much larger structures. The ability to control the morphology and form higher order structures is a crucial step in bottom up assembly of bionanomaterials. Cell toxicity assays suggest no adverse impact of these structures on mammalian cell proliferation. There are many possible applications for protein nanofibers; here we illustrate their potential as templates for nanowire formation, with a simple gold plating process. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Biopolymers 97: 595–606, 2012.

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