A Supramolecular Host-Guest Carrier System for Growth Factors Employing VHH Fragments

Jordi Cabanas Danés, Emilie Dooms Rodrigues, Ellie Landman, Jasper van Weerd, Clemens van Blitterswijk, Theo Verrips, Jurriaan Huskens, Marcel Karperien, Pascal Jonkheijm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)
29 Downloads (Pure)


A supramolecular strategy is presented for the assembly of growth factors employing His6-tagged single-domain antibodies (VHH). A combination of orthogonal supramolecular interactions of β-cyclodextrin (βCD)-adamantyl (Ad) host-guest and N-nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA)-histidine (His) interactions was employed to generate reversible and homogeneous layers of growth factors. A single-domain antibody VHH fragment was identified to bind to the human bone morphogenetic protein-6 (hBMP6) growth factor and could be recombinantly expressed in E. coli. The VHH fragment was equipped with a C-terminal hexahistidine (His6) tether to facilitate the assembly on βCD surfaces using a linker that contains an Ad group to bind to the βCD receptors and an NTA moiety to interact with the His6-tag upon cocomplexation of Ni(2+) ions. After exploring the thermodynamic and kinetic stability of the VHH assemblies on βCD surfaces using a variety of experimental techniques including microcontact printing (μCP), surface plasmon resonance (SPR), microscale thermophoresis (MST), and theoretical models for determining the thermodynamic behavior of the system, hBMP6 was assembled onto the VHH-functionalized surfaces. After analyzing the immobilized hBMP6 using immunostaining, the biological activity of hBMP6 was demonstrated in cell differentiation experiments. Early osteogenic differentiation was analyzed in terms of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity of KS483-4C3 mouse progenitor cells, and the results indicated that the reversibly immobilized growth factors were functionally delivered to the cells. In conclusion, the supramolecular strategy used here offers the necessary affinity, reversibility, and temporal control to promote biological function of the growth factors that were delivered by this strategy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12675-12681
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number36
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • 22/4 OA procedure


Dive into the research topics of 'A Supramolecular Host-Guest Carrier System for Growth Factors Employing VHH Fragments'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this