Metal Ion-Induced Self-Assembly of a Multi-Responsive Block Copolypeptide into Well-Defined Nanocapsules

Mark B. van Eldijk, Lise Schoonen, Jeroen J.L.M. Cornelissen, Roeland J.M. Nolte, Jan C.M. van Hest

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)
36 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Protein cages are an interesting class of biomaterials with potential applications in bionanotechnology. Therefore, substantial effort is spent on the development of capsule-forming designer polypeptides with a tailor-made assembly profile. The expanded assembly profile of a triblock copolypeptide consisting of a metal ion chelating hexahistidine-tag, a stimulus-responsive elastin-like polypeptide block, and a pH-responsive morphology-controlling viral capsid protein is presented. The self-assembly of this multi-responsive protein-based block copolymer is triggered by the addition of divalent metal ions. This assembly process yields monodisperse nanocapsules with a 20 nm diameter composed of 60 polypeptides. The well-defined nanoparticles are the result of the emergent properties of all the blocks of the polypeptide. These results demonstrate the feasibility of hexahistidine-tags to function as supramolecular cross-linkers. Furthermore, their potential for the metal ion-mediated encapsulation of hexahistidine-tagged proteins is shown.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2476-2483
Number of pages8
JournalSmall
Volume12
Issue number18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 May 2016

Keywords

  • Block copolypeptides
  • Elastin-like polypeptides
  • Protein nanocapsules
  • Self-assembly
  • Virus-like particles
  • 2023 OA procedure

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