Controlled nanometric fibers of self-assembled designed protein scaffolds†
The use of biological molecules as platforms for templating and nanofabrication is an emerging field. Here, we use designed protein building blocks based on small repetitive units (consensus tetratricopeptide repeat – CTPR) to generate fibrillar linear nanostructures by controlling the self-assembly properties of the units. We fully characterize the kinetics and thermodynamics of the assembly and describe the polymerization process by a simple model that captures the features of the structures formed under defined conditions. This work, together with previously established functionalization potential, sets up the basis for the application of these blocks in the fabrication and templating of complex hybrid nanostructures.