Exploring the sequence space for (tri-)peptide self-assembly to design and discover new hydrogels

Pim W. J. M. Frederix, Gary G. Scott, Yousef M. Abul-Haija, Daniela Kalafatovic, Charalampos G. Pappas, Nadeem Javid, Neil T. Hunt, Rein V. Ulijn, Tell Tuttle

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305 Citations (Scopus)
248 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Peptides that self-assemble into nanostructures are of tremendous interest for biological, medical, photonic and nanotechnological applications. The enormous sequence space that is available from 20 amino acids probably harbours many interesting candidates, but it is currently not possible to predict supramolecular behaviour from sequence alone. Here, we demonstrate computational tools to screen for the aqueous self-assembly propensity in all of the 8,000 possible tripeptides and evaluate these by comparison with known examples. We applied filters to select for candidates that simultaneously optimize the apparently contradicting requirements of aggregation propensity and hydrophilicity, which resulted in a set of design rules for self-assembling sequences. A number of peptides were subsequently synthesized and characterized, including the first reported tripeptides that are able to form a hydrogel at neutral pH. These tools, which enable the peptide sequence space to be searched for supramolecular properties, enable minimalistic peptide nanotechnology to deliver on its promise.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)30-37
Number of pages8
JournalNature Chemistry
Volume7
Issue number1
Early online date8 Dec 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2015

Keywords

  • peptides
  • nanostructures
  • nanotechnological application
  • supramolecular behaviour

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    • 1 Invited talk

    Predicting Peptide Hydrogels and their Properties

    Tell Tuttle (Invited speaker)

    9 Mar 2015

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk

    Cite this

    Frederix, P. W. J. M., Scott, G. G., Abul-Haija, Y. M., Kalafatovic, D., Pappas, C. G., Javid, N., Hunt, N. T., Ulijn, R. V., & Tuttle, T. (2015). Exploring the sequence space for (tri-)peptide self-assembly to design and discover new hydrogels. Nature Chemistry, 7(1), 30-37. https://doi.org/10.1038/nchem.2122