Supramolecular Peptide Crystals with designed Proton Channels

Project Details


The efficient transfer of protons (the smallest ions in nature) through protein nanopore is a fiindamental process to energy supply in living systems. There functional behavior has been studied extensively. Yet, experimental efforts to synthetically mimic proton channel performance has proven anything but simple. Moreover, for applications it is desirable to expand the charge transport distances from a few nanometers in membrane channels, to many micron length scales. The suggested project suggests to develop a simplistic design that is based on the same building blocks of natural proteins (amino acids) to produce synthetic materials that present proton conduction across many microns During the project We will prepare supramolecular ordered structures based on minimalistic tripeptide sequences. We will characterize proton conductivity and elucidate charge transport mechanisms through the biomimetic channels, and finally demonstrate that these materials can be used in devices that produce electric voltage (batteries) or electric power by transduction of the energy embedded in the humidity of the environment.

Our unique approach will provide novel simple and rational peptide design solutions, repurposing evolutionary developed proteins‘ function to meet criteria imposed by technological applications. The materials we develop will be inexpensive, biodegradable and recyclable with demonstrated application for transducing environmentally stored energy to electric output.

Effective start/end date1/01/20 → …


  • United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation (BSF)


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