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Enzymes as Tools for Building and Manipulating Nanomaterials /


In biology, stimuli-responsive multisubunit assemblies are ubiquitous, and mimicking these systems via synthetic approaches is of increasing interest. Interfacing such synthetic materials with biological systems is particularly promising for a range of biomedical applications including targeted drug delivery and molecular diagnostics. Within this class of materials are particles capable of changing morphology in response to stimuli. Enzymes are attractive and unique stimuli with great potential in this regard, as they propagate an amplified response via catalytic reactions, can be highly substrate specific, and have expression patterns sometimes associated with disease states. The first chapter of this thesis describes the importance of developing enzyme- responsive nanomaterials that use peptide as building blocks incorporated into polymeric materials to generate biohybride materials. These materials were designed to undergo chemical properties or morphology change in response to biotic/abiotic stimuli. Chapter 2 describes peptide-based block copolymer amphiphiles are well-suited for the development of functional, enzyme-responsive systems because changes in the chemical or physical nature of the amphiphile can lead to formation, destruction, or morphological transformations. Chapter 3 describes a novel chemoenzymatic approach to fabricate spherical micelles and make fibril micelles via peptide amphiphiles generation. Chapter 4 describes the possibility of using a bacterial transpeptidase as a molecular stapler to sequence specifically conjugate a peptide-based chemical molecule to another and that potentially generate functional assembly which have a range of physical or chemical properties

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