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Title: Highly stable and self-repairing membrane-mimetic 2D nanomaterials assembled from lipid-like peptoids

Two-dimensional (2D) materials with molecular-scale thickness have attracted increasing interest for separation, electronic, catalytic, optical, energy and biomedical applications.1-4 Although extensive research on 2D materials, such as graphene and graphene oxide, has been performed in recent years, progress is limited on self-assembly of 2D materials from sequence-specific macromolecules,5-7 especially from synthetic sequences that could exhibit lipid-like self-assembly of bilayer sheets and mimic membrane proteins for functions. The creation of such new class of materials could enable development of highly stable biomimetic membranes that exhibit cell-membrane-like molecular transport with exceptional selectively and high transport rates.8,9 Here we demonstrate self-assembly of lipid-like 12-mer peptoids into extremely stable, crystalline, flexible and free-standing 2D membrane materials. As with cell membranes, upon exposure to external stimuli, these materials exhibit changes in thickness,10 varying from 3.5 nm to 5.6 nm. We find that self-assembly occurs through a facile crystallization process, in which inter-peptoid hydrogen bonds and enhanced hydrophobic interactions drive the formation of a highly-ordered structure. Molecular simulation confirms this is the energetically favored structure. Displaying functional groups at arbitrary locations of membrane-forming peptoids produces membranes with similar structures. This research further shows that single-layer membranes can be coated onto substrate surfaces. Moreover, membranes with mechanically-inducedmore » defects can self-repair. Given that peptoids are sequence-specific and exhibit protein-like molecular recognition with enhanced stability,11 we anticipate our membranes to be a robust platform tailored to specific applications.« less
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Journal Article
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Journal Name: Nature Communications, 7:12252
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
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Country of Publication:
United States