A simple method for preventing nanoparticle-protein aggregation

Web writer Morgan Stanton summarises a recent article from the journal

The interaction of proteins with nanoparticles has significant applications for clinical and biomedical therapies, specifically the field of theranostics, where diagnostic and therapeutic agents are combined into a single entity.  Unfortunately, it has been well documented that attachment of proteins to nanoparticle surfaces leads to deformation of the protein and loss of protein activity.  Aggregates of proteins form on the particle and induce aggregate formation of the particles themselves, hindering any theranostic capability.

In a recent communication in Soft Matter, researchers from Johns Hopkins University, USA, and Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, India, describe a simple chemical method for solving this dilemma; addition of sugar.  The naturally occurring disaccharide, trehalose, has demonstrated the ability to stabilize protein structures and shield them from thermal stress and dehydration.  The protective nature of trehalose has been described by three hypotheses: (1) mechanical entrapment of the protein within the sugar molecules, (2) hydrogen bonding of the trehalose with the protein for chemical stabilization, (3) or water entrapment between the surface of the protein and trehalose.  The research team exploited the protective properties of trehalose to insulate the protein, lysozyme, while the protein was exposed to silver nanoparticles, thus preventing denaturing of the protein.

Silver nanoparticles

Interaction of silver nanoparticles with lysozyme with varying trehalose concentrations

Without chemical stabilization, lysozyme aggregated on the nanoparticle surface and had significant structural deorganization.  In the presence of trehalose, lysozyme maintained its active conformation and exhibited limited or no aggregation.  By adjusting the concentration of trehalose in solution, nanoparticle-protein interactions were modulated.  Analytical methods, including UV-vis absorbance, circular dichroism, and surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) illustrated and characterized the changes is binding of the lysozyme to the silver nanoparticle surface and the enhanced stability of the protein.  The proof-of-concept system created a biocompatible environment for nanoparticles and proteins to engage without compromising lysozyme structure or activity.  The proposed method will facilitate the development of nanoparticle theranostics and opens new avenues for nanomedicine design.

See the full Soft Matter article here:

Revealing the trehalose mediated inhibition of protein aggregation through lysozyme-silver nanoparticle interaction
Soumik Siddhanta, Ishan Barman, and Chandrabhas Narayana
Soft Matter, 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5SM01896J


Morgan M. Stanton Dr. Morgan M. Stanton is currently a postdoctoral researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in Stuttgart, Germany.  She completed her Ph.D. in Chemistry from Worcester Polytechnic Institute in 2014.  Read more about Morgan’s research publications here.

Follow the latest Soft Matter publications and updates on Twitter @softmatter or on Facebook

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Top 10 most-read Soft Matter articles – Q2 2015

This month sees the following articles in Soft Matter that are in the top ten most accessed from April – June:

Crystalline order and topological charges on capillary bridges 
Verena Schmid and Axel Voigt    
Soft Matter, 2014,10, 4694-4699
DOI: 10.1039/C4SM00228H

Stimuli-responsive Pickering emulsions: recent advances and potential applications
Juntao Tang, Patrick James Quinlan and Kam Chiu Tam     
Soft Matter, 2015,11, 3512-3529
DOI: 10.1039/C5SM00247H

Manipulation of micro- and nanostructure motion with magnetic fields 
Roger S. M. Rikken, Roeland J. M. Nolte, Jan C. Maan, Jan C. M. van Hest, Daniela A. Wilson and Peter C. M. Christianen  
Soft Matter, 2014,10, 1295-1308
DOI: 10.1039/C3SM52294F

Liquid marbles: topical context within soft matter and recent progress 
G. McHale and M. I. Newton    
Soft Matter, 2015,11, 2530-2546
DOI: 10.1039/C5SM00084J

Biomimetic fabrication of information-rich phenolic-chitosan films 
Kelsey M. Gray, Eunkyoung Kim, Li-Qun Wu, Yi Liu, William E. Bentley and Gregory F. Payne    
Soft Matter, 2011,7, 9601-9615
DOI: 10.1039/C1SM05293D

Progess in superhydrophobic surface development 
Paul Roach, Neil J. Shirtcliffe and Michael I. Newton    
Soft Matter, 2008,4, 224-240
DOI: 10.1039/B712575P

Understanding diluted dispersions of superparamagnetic particles under strong magnetic fields: a review of concepts, theory and simulations 
Jordi Faraudo, Jordi S. Andreu and Juan Camacho    
Soft Matter, 2013,9, 6654-6664
DOI: 10.1039/C3SM00132F

Continuous droplet interface crossing encapsulation (cDICE) for high throughput monodisperse vesicle design 
Manouk Abkarian, Etienne Loiseau and Gladys Massiera    
Soft Matter, 2011,7, 4610-4614
DOI: 10.1039/C1SM05239J

Droplet mobility on lubricant-impregnated surfaces 
J. David Smith, Rajeev Dhiman, Sushant Anand, Ernesto Reza-Garduno, Robert E. Cohen, Gareth H. McKinley and Kripa K. Varanasi    
Soft Matter, 2013,9, 1772-1780
DOI: 10.1039/C2SM27032C

Janus particles 
Andreas Walther and Axel H. E. Müller  
Soft Matter, 2008,4, 663-668
DOI: 10.1039/B718131K

Why not take a look at the articles today and blog your thoughts and comments below.

Fancy submitting an article to Soft Matter? Then why not submit to us today!

To keep up-to-date with all the latest research, sign up for the Soft Matter e-Alert or RSS feeds or follow Soft Matter on Twitter or Facebook

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5th International Conference on Self-Healing Materials 2015 Oral Presentation Prize winner

Soft Matter oral presentation prize icshm2015

A huge congratulations to Arn Mignon who was awarded the Soft Matter Oral Presentation Prize at the 5th International Conference on Self-Healing Materials (ICSHM2015). The conference took place on the 22 – 24 June 2015 in Durham, USA and was sponsored by Soft Matter.

Arn Mignon is from Ghent University and won the Soft Matter Oral Presentation Prize with his talk titled “Smart super absorbent polymers for self-healing of motar.”

ICSHM2015 focussed on the newly emerging field of self-healing biomaterials, encompassing all classes of self-healing materials including polymers, ceramics, metals, and composites, as well as biomedical implants. Further details about the conference can be found by taking a look at their website.

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Glass transition in ant traffic jams

Article written by Sam Ivell

Inspired by the fluid-like motion of flocks of birds, researchers in the US have used techniques from soft matter physics to study the way that fire ants move.

At high density collective ant flow can be described by the physics of glass-forming soft materials © Shutterstock

Collective motion is ubiquitous in nature. Fire ants in particular provide a fascinating case study due to the confinement enforced by the foraging tunnels in which they move. A key factor in the motion of fire ants, and other eusocial insects, is the requirement to stop and communicate with each other, leading to traffic jams and blockages along the 50m long underground superhighways in which they travel.

To read the full article visit Chemistry World.

Glass-like dynamics in confined and congested ant traffic
Nick Gravish, Gregory Gold, Andrew Zangwill, Michael A.D. Goodisman and Daniel I Goldman  
Soft Matter, 2015, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C5SM00693G, Paper

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Soft Matter’s 2014 Impact Factor is 4.029

Soft Matter is delighted to announce its 2014 Impact Factor is 4.029.

Soft Matter has been dedicated to fundamental soft matter research at the interface of physics, chemistry and biology for the last 10 years. Its impressive Impact Factor of 4.029 is a strong assurance that Soft Matter is a leading journal within the soft matter field.

Our celebratory 10 year Anniversary collection exemplifies the kind of high impact, multidisciplinary soft matter science that Soft Matter aims to publish.

Our fast times to publication ensure that your research is reviewed and announced to the community rapidly.

From receipt, youresearch papers will be published in 63 days. (Data taken from average manuscript handling times between January – April 2015)

Publishing your research in Soft Matter means that your article will be read and cited by your colleagues.

Our unique combination of high quality articles, outstanding Editorial and Advisory Board, free colour and flexible manuscript format make it clear to see why Soft Matter is the leading journal within the soft matter field.

Our articles encompass a wide range of soft matter research and this is highlighted in these recent Soft Matter articles:

Stretching self-entangled DNA molecules in elongational fields
C. Benjamin Renner and Patrick S. Doyle
Soft Matter, 2015, 11, 3105-3114

A dynamic and self-crosslinked polysaccharide hydrogel with autonomous self-healing ability
Fuyuan Ding, Shuping Wu, Shishuai Wang, Yuan Xiong, Yan Li, Bin Li, Hongbing Deng, Yumin Du, Ling Xiao and Xiaowen Shi
Soft Matter, 2015, 11, 3971-3976

Domain walls and anchoring transitions mimicking nematic biaxiality in the oxadiazole bent-core liquid crystal C7
Young-Ki Kim, Greta Cukrov, Jie Xiang, Sung-Tae Shin and Oleg D. Lavrentovich
Soft Matter, 2015, 11, 3963-3970

Anisotropic colloidal transport and periodic stick-slip motion in cholesteric finger textures
Kui Chen, Linnea P. Metcalf, David P. Rivas, Daniel H. Reich and Robert L. Leheny
Soft Matter, 2015, 11, 4189-4196

Phase separation in ternary fluid mixtures: a molecular dynamics study
Awaneesh Singh and Sanjay Puri
Soft Matter, 2015, 11, 2213-2219

Self-assembly of Janus particles under shear
Emanuela Bianchi, Athanassios Z. Panagiotopoulos and Arash Nikoubashman
Soft Matter, 2015, 11, 3767-3771

So join the many leading scientists that have already chosen to publish in Soft Matter and submit today!

Submit your research
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HOT Articles for June!

Imaging viscoelastic properties of live cells by AFM: power-law rheology on the nanoscale
Fabian M. Hecht, Johannes Rheinlaender, Nicolas Schierbaum, Wolfgang H. Goldmann, Ben Fabry and Tilman E. Schäffer

Graphical abstract: Imaging viscoelastic properties of live cells by AFM: power-law rheology on the nanoscale

Studying the concentration dependence of the aggregation number of a micellar model system by SANS
Matthias Amann, Lutz Willner, Jörg Stellbrink, Aurel Radulescu and Dieter Richter

Graphical abstract: Studying the concentration dependence of the aggregation number of a micellar model system by SANS

These articles will be free until 29th June 2015


Transverse migration of polyelectrolytes in microfluidic channels induced by combined shear and electric fields
Mert Arca, Jason E. Butler and Anthony J. C. Ladd

Graphical abstract: Transverse migration of polyelectrolytes in microfluidic channels induced by combined shear and electric fields

Cholesterol expels ibuprofen from the hydrophobic membrane core and stabilizes lamellar phases in lipid membranes containing ibuprofen
Richard J. Alsop, Clare L. Armstrong, Amna Maqbool, Laura Toppozini, Hannah Dies and Maikel C. Rheinstädter

Graphical abstract: Cholesterol expels ibuprofen from the hydrophobic membrane core and stabilizes lamellar phases in lipid membranes containing ibuprofen

These articles will be free until 8th June 2015


Modelling the rheology of anisotropic particles adsorbed on a two-dimensional fluid interface
Alan M. Luo, Leonard M. C. Sagis, Hans Christian Öttinger, Cristiano De Michele and Patrick Ilg

Graphical abstract: Modelling the rheology of anisotropic particles adsorbed on a two-dimensional fluid interface
 
Nonthermal fluctuations of the mitotic spindle
Kevin Smith, Brian Griffin, Henry Byrd, F. C. MacKintosh and Maria L. Kilfoil

Graphical abstract: Nonthermal fluctuations of the mitotic spindle

These articles will be free until 13th July 2015


Fluctuations of particle motion in granular avalanches – from the microscopic to the macroscopic scales
Ziwei Wang and Jie Zhang

Graphical abstract: Fluctuations of particle motion in granular avalanches – from the microscopic to the macroscopic scales
A giant polymer lattice in a polymer-stabilized blue phase liquid crystal
H. Kikuchi, S. Izena, H. Higuchi, Y. Okumura and K. Higashiguchi 

Graphical abstract: A giant polymer lattice in a polymer-stabilized blue phase liquid crystal

These articles will be free until 21st  July 2015


 
pH-Responsive assembly of metal nanoparticles and fluorescent dyes by diblock copolymer micelles
Hyun Woo Kim, Jang Whan Kim, Seong Ho Jo, Chang-Lyoul Lee, Won-Ki Lee, Seong Soo Park, Bonghoon Chung and Seong Il Yoo

Graphical abstract: pH-Responsive assembly of metal nanoparticles and fluorescent dyes by diblock copolymer micelles

 
 
Two types of Cassie-to-Wenzel wetting transitions on superhydrophobic surfaces during drop impact
Choongyeop Lee, Youngsuk Nam, Henri Lastakowski, Janet I. Hur, Seungwon Shin, Anne-Laure Biance, Christophe Pirat, Chang-Jin “CJ” Kim and Christophe Ybert 

Graphical abstract: Two types of Cassie-to-Wenzel wetting transitions on superhydrophobic surfaces during drop impact

These articles will be free until 27th  July 2015


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Recent Appointees in Materials Science 2015 Conference (RAMS2015)

Recent Appointees in Materials Science 2015 Conference RAMS

We are delighted to announce that the Recent Appointees in Materials Science 2015 Conference (RAMS2015) will be held at the University of Warwick on 16-17th September 2015.

Deadlines and dates

Registration will open shortly so be sure to sign up to this essential meeting before 1st September 2015! The cost of registration is £125 for accommodation and meals, including the conference banquet at Warwick Castle. A reduced rate of £70 is offered for those not requiring accommodation.

Abstract submissions are now being accepted for oral and poster presentation but make sure you submit your abstracts by the deadline on 30th June 2015.

Bursaries

A small number of bursaries are available for those with limited travel budgets and will be assessed on an individual basis. Enquire about bursaries here.

Keynote speakers

Biomaterials Science Advisory Board member Andrew Dove (University of Warwick) will be speaking along with other keynote speakers Aron Walsh (University of Bath) and Mary Ryan (Imperial College London). View the full list of invited speakers here.

For full details visit the RAMS2015 website. We hope you can join the materials science community for this fantastic event.

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Top 10 most-read Soft Matter articles – Q1 2015

This month sees the following articles in Soft Matter that are in the top ten most accessed from January – March:

Liquid marbles: principles and applications 
Glen McHale and Michael I. Newton  
Soft Matter, 2011,7, 5473-5481
DOI: 10.1039/C1SM05066D

Tunable assembly of graphene oxide surfactant sheets: wrinkles, overlaps and impacts on thin film properties 
Laura J. Cote, Jaemyung Kim, Zhen Zhang, Cheng Sun and Jiaxing Huang    
Soft Matter, 2010,6, 6096-6101
DOI: 10.1039/C0SM00667J

Thermoresponsive switching of liquid flow direction on a two-face prism array 
Sang Moon Kim, Do Hyun Kang, Jai Hyun Koh, Hyo Seon Suh, Hyunsik Yoon, Kahp-Yang Suh and Kookheon Char  
Soft Matter, 2013,9, 4145-4149
DOI: 10.1039/C3SM27901D

Manipulation of micro- and nanostructure motion with magnetic fields 
Roger S. M. Rikken, Roeland J. M. Nolte, Jan C. Maan, Jan C. M. van Hest, Daniela A. Wilson and Peter C. M. Christianen   
Soft Matter, 2014,10, 1295-1308
DOI: 10.1039/C3SM52294F

Ultra-thin conductive free-standing PEDOT/PSS nanofilms 
Francesco Greco, Alessandra Zucca, Silvia Taccola, Arianna Menciassi, Toshinori Fujie, Hiroki Haniuda, Shinji Takeoka, Paolo Dario and Virgilio Mattoli    
Soft Matter, 2011,7, 10642-10650
DOI: 10.1039/C1SM06174G

Polyelectrolyte adsorption, interparticle forces, and colloidal aggregation 
Istvan Szilagyi, Gregor Trefalt, Alberto Tiraferri, Plinio Maroni and Michal Borkovec    
Soft Matter, 2014,10, 2479-2502
DOI: 10.1039/C3SM52132J

Understanding diluted dispersions of superparamagnetic particles under strong magnetic fields: a review of concepts, theory and simulations 
Jordi Faraudo, Jordi S. Andreu and Juan Camacho    
Soft Matter, 2013,9, 6654-6664
DOI: 10.1039/C3SM00132F

Directed self-assembly of block copolymers: a tutorial review of strategies for enabling nanotechnology with soft matter 
Hanqiong Hu, Manesh Gopinadhan and Chinedum O. Osuji  
Soft Matter, 2014,10, 3867-3889
DOI: 10.1039/C3SM52607K

Bioinspired materials that self-shape through programmed microstructures 
André R. Studart and Randall M. Erb  
Soft Matter, 2014,10, 1284-1294
DOI: 10.1039/C3SM51883C

Liquid marbles: topical context within soft matter and recent progress 
G. McHale and M. I. Newton  
Soft Matter, 2015,11, 2530-2546
DOI: 10.1039/C5SM00084J

Why not take a look at the articles today and blog your thoughts and comments below.

Fancy submitting an article to Soft Matter? Then why not submit to us today!

To keep up-to-date with all the latest research, sign up for the Soft Matter e-Alert or RSS feeds or follow Soft Matter on Twitter or Facebook

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2015 Soft Matter Lectureship is awarded to Lucio Isa

We are delighted to announce Professor Lucio Isa (ETH Zurich) as the 2015 Soft Matter Lectureship winner.

The Soft Matter Lectureship is an annual award that honours an early-stage career researcher for their significant contribution to the soft matter field. The recipient is selected by the Soft Matter Editorial Board from a list of candidates nominated by the community.

Read on to find out more about Lucio…

Lucio Isa 2015 Soft Matter Lectureship winner

Professor Dr Lucio Isa was born in Milan (Italy) in 1979. In 2004 he completed his university studies in Nuclear Engineering with a Mathematics and Physics specialisation at the Milan Polytechnic, obtaining a Master’s degree with honors (100/100 cum laude) with a research project on thermal diffusion of colloidal suspensions with Professor Roberto Piazza. He then moved on to obtain a PhD in Soft Matter Physics at the University of Edinburgh in 2008 (Professor Wilson Poon) where he worked on flow and deformation of dense colloidal glasses. His PhD work was awarded on two occasions (Marie Curie Early Stage Researcher 2007 Award and the British Society of Rheology 2008 Vernon Harrison Award for the most outstanding UK PhD rheology thesis in the academic year 2007/2008). After a short postdoctoral spell in Edinburgh, he moved to the Materials Department of ETH Zurich at the end of 2008 to work on self-assembled materials in the Laboratory for Surface Science and Technology (Professors Nicholas D. Spencer and Marcus Textor). During his time at ETH Zurich he was awarded a Marie Curie Postdoctoral Fellowship, an SNSF travel grant as visiting scientist to the University of California Santa Barbara (Professor Todd Squires) and an SNSF Ambizione Fellowship aimed at studying various aspects of micro and nanoparticle self-assembly at liquid interfaces.

Since 1st September 2013 he has been head of the Laboratory for Interfaces, Soft matter and Assembly in the Department of Materials at ETH Zurich as SNSF Assistant Professor. His current interests revolve around the basic understanding of soft materials in terms of their structural, dynamical and mechanical properties, with a specific focus on single-particle wetting and on the rheology of colloidal monolayers and dense pastes. This basic understanding is then applied to the engineering of new materials and processes, including multifunctional colloids, optically active materials and surface nanopatterning.

Professor Isa is a co-founder of Swiss Soft Days, an initiative aimed at creating a national network of scientists working in Soft Matter in Switzerland. He has published 45 peer-reviewed articles in international scientific journals to date and he is the 2015 recipient of the Soft Matter Lectureship award.

Lucio’s most recent Soft Matter articles include:

A multiscale approach to the adsorption of core–shell nanoparticles at fluid interfaces
Adrienne Nelson, Dapeng Wang, Kaloian Koynov and Lucio Isa
Soft Matter, 2015, 11, 118-129

Highly ordered 2D microgel arrays: compression versus self-assembly
Karen Geisel, Walter Richtering and Lucio Isa
Soft Matter, 2014, 10, 7968-7976

Keep your eyes peeled for Lucio’s upcoming Soft Matter article in honour of the Lectureship award.

We would like to thank everybody who nominated a candidate for the Lectureship; we received many excellent nominations, and the Editorial Board had a difficult task in choosing between some outstanding candidates.

Please join us in congratulating Lucio in his fantastic achievements by adding your comments below.

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HOT Articles for May!

A new lattice Monte Carlo simulation for dielectric saturation in ion-containing liquids
Xiaozheng Duan and Issei Nakamura

Graphical abstract: A new lattice Monte Carlo simulation for dielectric saturation in ion-containing liquids

Domain walls and anchoring transitions mimicking nematic biaxiality in the oxadiazole bent-core liquid crystal C7
Young-Ki Kim, Greta Cukrov, Jie Xiang, Sung-Tae Shin and Oleg D. Lavrentovich

Graphical abstract: Domain walls and anchoring transitions mimicking nematic biaxiality in the oxadiazole bent-core liquid crystal C7

These articles will be free until 3rd June 2015


Interface-enforced complexation between copolymer blocks
Alexander A. Steinschulte, Weinan Xu, Fabian Draber, Pascal Hebbeker, Andre Jung, Dimitri Bogdanovski, Stefanie Schneider, Vladimir V. Tsukruk and Felix A. Plamper

Graphical abstract: Interface-enforced complexation between copolymer blocks

A dynamic and self-crosslinked polysaccharide hydrogel with autonomous self-healing ability
Fuyuan Ding, Shuping Wu, Shishuai Wang, Yuan Xiong, Yan Li, Bin Li, Hongbing Deng, Yumin Du, Ling Xiao and Xiaowen Shi

Graphical abstract: A dynamic and self-crosslinked polysaccharide hydrogel with autonomous self-healing ability

These articles will be free until 8th June 2015


Surfactant-induced assembly of enzymatically-stable peptide hydrogels
Brad H. Jones, Alina M. Martinez, Jill S. Wheeler and Erik D. Spoerke  

Graphical abstract: Surfactant-induced assembly of enzymatically-stable peptide hydrogels

Tunable synthesis of self-assembled cyclic peptide nanotubes and nanoparticles
Leming Sun, Zhen Fan, Yongzhong Wang, Yujian Huang, Michael Schmidt and Mingjun Zhang

Graphical abstract: Tunable synthesis of self-assembled cyclic peptide nanotubes and nanoparticles
 

These articles will be free until 16th  June 2015


Anisotropic colloidal transport and periodic stick-slip motion in cholesteric finger textures
Kui Chen, Linnea P. Metcalf, David P. Rivas, Daniel H. Reich and Robert L. Leheny

Graphical abstract: Anisotropic colloidal transport and periodic stick-slip motion in cholesteric finger textures
 

Heterogeneous flow kinematics of cellulose nanofibril suspensions under shear
F. Martoïa, C. Perge, P. J. J. Dumont, L. Orgéas, M. A. Fardin, S. Manneville and M. N. Belgacem

Graphical abstract: Heterogeneous flow kinematics of cellulose nanofibril suspensions under shear

These articles will be free until 23rd  June 2015


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