Nucleation of Iron Oxide Nanoparticles Mediated by Mms6 Protein in Situ

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Kashyap, Sanjay
Woehl, Taylor
Liu, Xunpei
Prozorov, Tanya
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Mallapragada, Surya
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Chemical and Biological Engineering

The function of the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering has been to prepare students for the study and application of chemistry in industry. This focus has included preparation for employment in various industries as well as the development, design, and operation of equipment and processes within industry.Through the CBE Department, Iowa State University is nationally recognized for its initiatives in bioinformatics, biomaterials, bioproducts, metabolic/tissue engineering, multiphase computational fluid dynamics, advanced polymeric materials and nanostructured materials.

The Department of Chemical Engineering was founded in 1913 under the Department of Physics and Illuminating Engineering. From 1915 to 1931 it was jointly administered by the Divisions of Industrial Science and Engineering, and from 1931 onward it has been under the Division/College of Engineering. In 1928 it merged with Mining Engineering, and from 1973–1979 it merged with Nuclear Engineering. It became Chemical and Biological Engineering in 2005.

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1913 - present

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  • Department of Chemical Engineering (1913–1928)
  • Department of Chemical and Mining Engineering (1928–1957)
  • Department of Chemical Engineering (1957–1973, 1979–2005)
    • Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering (2005–present)

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Biomineralization proteins are widely used as templating agents in biomimetic synthesis of a variety of organic-inorganic nanostructures. However, the role of the protein in controlling the nucleation and growth of biomimetic particles is not well understood, because the mechanism of the bioinspired reaction is often deduced from ex situ analysis of the resultant nanoscale mineral phase. Here we report the direct visualization of biomimetic iron oxide nanoparticle nucleation mediated by an acidic bacterial recombinant protein, Mms6, during an in situ reaction induced by the controlled addition of sodium hydroxide to solution-phase Mms6 protein micelles incubated with ferric chloride. Using in situ liquid cell scanning transmission electron microscopy we observe the liquid iron prenucleation phase and nascent amorphous nanoparticles forming preferentially on the surface of protein micelles. Our results provide insight into the early steps of protein-mediated biomimetic nucleation of iron oxide and point to the importance of an extended protein surface during nanoparticle formation.


Reprinted (adapted) with permission from ACS Nano 8 (2014): 9097, doi: 10.1021/nn502551y. Copyright 2014 American Chemical Society.

Wed Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2014