Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Nanoreactors for Reaction Cascades

20.08.2007
Nanoscopic bubbles with plastic membrane and built-in enzymes for multistep one-pot reactions

Living cells are highly complex synthetic machines: Numerous multistep reactions run simultaneously side by side and with unbelievable efficiency and specificity.

For these mainly enzymatic reactions to work so well collectively, nature makes use of a variety of concepts. One of the most important of these is division into compartments. Enzymes are not only separated spatially, but also positioned in specific locations within the cell. Researchers from the Netherlands, led by Jan C. M. van Hest and Alan E. Rowan, have now developed an approach to copy this idea, as they report in the journal Angewandte Chemie.

They constructed nanoreactors by controlled positioning of two different enzymes in the central water reservoir or the plastic membrane of synthetic nanoscopic bubbles. In combination with a third enzyme in the surrounding solution, this system has made it possible to run three different enzymatic reactions simultaneously, without interference, in a “one-pot” reaction.

... more about:
»Membrane »bubbles »enzyme »polymersomes

To mimic a cellular environment, the scientists produced nanoscopic bubbles surrounded by a membrane made of a special plastic. The plastic is a block copolymer that is analogous to a lipid, the natural building block of cell membranes, in its structure, with a water-friendly “head” and a water-repellent “tail”. In analogy to liposomes, which are made from lipids, these bubbles are called polymersomes. Thanks to nearly limitless possibilities in the production of these plastic membranes, the spectrum of properties displayed by polymersomes can be precisely tailored.

The researchers produced their polymersomes such that they let small molecules pass through while forming a barrier to larger ones. This allows enzymes to be trapped inside the polymersomes (in the water reservoir) while the smaller substrate or product molecules pass through unhindered.

To demonstrate the potential of their “nanoreactors”, the researchers bound the enzyme horseradish peroxidase into the membrane itself. Within the water reservoir, they trapped the enzyme glucose oxidase. The surrounding solution contained the enzyme lipase B. Glucose molecules with four acetyl groups attached were added as the substrate. In the first step, the lipase B split off the acetyl groups. The resulting glucose could cross the membrane, where it encountered the glucose oxidase and was oxidized by it. This reaction formed hydrogen peroxide, which is just what the horseradish peroxidase was waiting for in order to convert the sample substrate ABTS (2,2’-azinobis(3-ethylbenzthiazoline-6-sulfonic acid))—also contained in the solution—into its radical cation.

Author: Jan C. M. van Hest, Radboud University, Nijmegen (The Netherlands), http://www.ru.nl/bio-orgchem/people/current_group/prof_dr_ir_jan_c_m/

Title: Positional Assembly of Enzymes in Polymersome Nanoreactors for Cascade Reactions

Angewandte Chemie International Edition, doi: 10.1002/anie.200701125

Jan C. M. van Hest | Angewandte Chemie
Further information:
http://pressroom.angewandte.org
http://www.ru.nl/bio-orgchem/people/current_group/prof_dr_ir_jan_c_m/

Further reports about: Membrane bubbles enzyme polymersomes

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery
20.01.2017 | GSI Helmholtzzentrum für Schwerionenforschung GmbH

nachricht Seeking structure with metagenome sequences
20.01.2017 | DOE/Joint Genome Institute

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>