IRG2: Biologically-inspired Janus-dendrimer Assemblies (2011-17)

IRG Leaders: Daniel A. Hammer & Virgil Percec

Senior Investigators; Jason A. Burdick, William F. DeGrado, Mark D. Goulian, Paul A. Heiney, Daeyeon Lee, and Michael L. Klein

IRG-2 will create new materials, inspired by virology, from self-assembled Janus dendrimers and designer proteins. These new materials, with virus-like structures and functions, will be useful for sensing, communication, and response. Self-assembling amphiphilic Janus-dendrimers (JDs) – dendrimers with two faces, one hydrophilic and one hydrophobic – will be used to build novel nano-structures which will be equipped with components to amplify signals, inactivate viruses, and harvest energy. The IRG will engineer novel functionality into JD-vesicles (JDVs) using the structure of nature’s viruses as a guiding principle. Specifically, the IRG will design, synthesize, and characterize functional virus-like JDVs using an array of experimental tools, guided by state-of-the-art computer simulations. The collective effort of the group will be directed to design and optimize JD building blocks and peptide motifs that enable self-assembly and the integration of components into functioning virus-like nano-systems, containing self-assembling protein capsids and/or active sensory components, to ultimately produce entirely new smart nano-materials.

Highlights for IRG2

Hybrid Cell-Like Vesicular Assemblies from Bacterial Membranes and Synthetic Components
D. A. Hammer, M. L. Klein, M. Goulian, V. Percec

Glycodendrimers Can Sense Variants of Lectins by Agglutination
V. Percec, M. L. Klein, & D. A. Hammer (IRG-2)

Nanoscale Interfacial Complexation in Emulsion (NICE)
D. Lee & J. A. Burdick (IRG-2)

Synthesis, self-assembly and response of glycodendrimers
Virgil Percec, Paul A. Heiney and Mike Klein (IRG2)

Virgil Percec, Paul Heiney and Daniel A. Hammer (IRG2)

A color changing stress-sensor
Michael J. Therien, Ivan J. Dmochowski, and Daniel A. Hammer, (2011)