Research on attachment of antifreeze proteins to nanoparticles gathers pace
Antifreeze proteins (AFPs) have many potential applications, ranging from cryobiology to aerospace, if they can be incorporated into materials. Research led by the group of Prof. Matthew Gibson (Department of Chemistry), including contributions from Warwick's XPS Facility Manager Dr Marc Walker, has led to several interesting developments in this area in recent months.
In a publication in Langmuir, Christopher Stubbs and co-workers designed and synthesized metal-core nanoparticles bearing multiple copies of poly(vinyl alcohol) on their surface, using RAFT polymerization to enable control over molecular weight and to install a thiol-anchoring group. Polymers were identified which lead to colloidally stable gold particle dispersions to enable the ice recrystallization activity and ice shaping activity of the hybrids to be quantified and compared to free polymers in solution.
Related work by Laura Wilkins and co-workers in the Pioneering Investigators issue of Polymer Chemistry conjugated AFPs by site-specific methods onto nanoparticles to generate hybrid ice growth inhibiting materials to mimic the multivalent presentation of hyperactive antifreeze proteins and aid the application of these exciting proteins.
Publication in Langmuir: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.langmuir.8b01952
Publication in Polymer Chemistry: http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/C8PY01719K
Warwick XPS Facility: http://go.warwick.ac.uk/XPS
Prof. Matthew Gibson: https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/sci/chemistry/research/gibson/