Thematic Unit of Excellence on Computational Materials Science
S. N. Bose National Centre for basic Sciences

Magneto-structural transition in intermetallic alloys and compounds

:Dr. Arindam Banerjee

: 9th Feb 2016
: 11:30 AM
: Fermion (LH-3)
: Self-assembling peptides/amnio acid dervatives: from molecules to functional soft materials

Abstract:Molecular self-assembly plays a key role in chemical, biological and material sciences. Peptides are building blocks of proteins. Moreover, peptides are good candidates for the assembly by using various non-covalent interactions including hydrogen bonding, pi-pi stacking, electrostatic, solvophobic and others. Under suitable conditions, a peptide can be self-associated to form a micro/nano-network structure occupied by a large amount of solvent molecules (water/organic solvent) and this forms a soft material called gel. My research interest encompasses to control the assembly of designer oligopeptides to make useful gels and also to explore interesting applications of these gel based soft materials. These gels have been applied to accomplish a variety of functions including carriers of drugs 1 and other biologically active molecules2, removal of toxic organic dyes from waste-water 3, oil spill recovery4, and semiconducting photo-switching materials 5, remarkable antibacterial property 6. Moreover, some of these peptide based hydrogels exhibit a remarkable self-healing property, that is usually very rare in non-living systems. The self-healing property can also be tuned by the incorporation of carbon based nanomaterials like carbon nanotubes and graphene oxide 7. A gel based novel trihybrid system containing nanofibers, nanosheets and nanoparticles8 as well as the design of a two component white light emitting soft material will be discussed9. A recent study from our group vividly demonstrates preparation of multi-coloured, different sized fluorescent gold nanoclusters from blue to near-infrared( NIR), in depth structural analysis of the blue emitting Au 7 nanocluster and cellmaging by the NIR Au clusters 10. Another interesting study demonstrates peptide based soft biomaterials for cancer drug release and modulation of stiffness, drug release capacity and proteolytic stability of these hydrogels by incorporating D-amino acid residue(s).