Using amino acids to control ice growth
The GibsonGroup, in collaboration with the Sosso Group (chemistry) are investigating how small molecules can inhibit ice recrystallisation - a property more commonly associated with macromolecules, such as ice binding proteins or some polymers. The challenge of the macromolecules is that sequential modification is challenging, and hence structure-property relationships are often missing. Here the team show that phenyl alanine can inhibit ice recrystallisation and that modulation of the hydrophobic face impacts the magnitude of the activity. This work shows that ’small molecule’ approaches can be taken to probe the complex ice/water interface, with the long term goal of finding new molecules to control ice growth.
Read the paper here.