Directing Polymorph Specific Calcium Carbonate Formation with De Novo Protein Templates
December 14, 2023
Concept and design of protein template (top), that nucleates nano-calcite, which then assembles to form a calcite mesocyrstal (bottom)
We developed an approach to designing protein-based templates that direct calcite nucleation and determined the resulting pathways of nucleation and growth.
Significance and Impact
The results show that crystal polymorph, size, and shape can be tuned via protein structure and chemistry, paving the way for the development of hierarchical materials using rationally designed molecular templates.
Carried out computational design, biochemical characterization, and screening for ability to direct CaCO₃ mineralization for a range of de novo designed proteins
Followed in-situ and ex-situ nucleation pathway and growth of the resulting nanocrystals
Tested the effect of varying the dimensions and surface chemistry of the protein templates