(545e) Nano-Pipette Directed Motion of Functionalized Transmembrane Channel | AIChE

(545e) Nano-Pipette Directed Motion of Functionalized Transmembrane Channel


Dutt, M. - Presenter, University of Pittsburgh

Via the Dissipative Particle Dynamics approach, we design a system
that allows transport of a nanochannel to a desired location by
applying an external force. Each nanochannel encompasses an ABA
architecture, with a hydrophobic shaft (B) with two hydrophilic ends
(A). One of the hydrophilic ends of the nanochannel is functionalized
with hydrophilic functional groups, or hairs. The hydrophilic hairs
serve a dual role: (1) control transport across the membrane barrier
when the channel diffuses freely in the membrane, and (2) enable the
channel relocation to a specific membrane site. Our system comprises a
transmembrane hairy nanochannel with the hairs extending into
solution. In our earlier work, we demonstrated the spontaneous
insertion of such a hairy nanochannel into a lipid bilayer (Nanoscale,
2011, 3, 240).  First, we hold a suitably functionalized pipette
stationary above the membrane while the nanochannel freely diffuses
within the membrane. For an optimal range of parameters, we
demonstrate that the hairs find the pipette and spontaneously anchor
onto it. We then show that by moving the pipette for a range of
velocities, we can effectively transport the channel to any location
within the membrane. This prototype system can provide guidelines for
designing a number of biomimetic applications.