Navigation Links
Alzheimer substance may be the nanomaterial of tomorrow

Amyloid protein causes diseases like Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. But amyloid also carries unique characteristics that may lead to the development of new composite materials for the nano processors and data storage of tomorrow, and even make objects invisible.

Researchers from Chalmers University of Technology recently unveiled an unexpected discovery about amyloid in an article published in the Nature Photonics journal. Amyloids are misfolded variants of proteins that occur naturally in the body. The researchers have now shown that the misfolded variants react to multiphoton irradiation, a type of laser effect, whereas the healthy proteins do not.

The discovery could be useful in a variety of fields. Not only can it lead to new methods to detect and treat the brain diseases that amyloid causes (see earlier press release below), amyloid may also be used as a building block for future nanomaterials.

"It is possible to create these protein aggregates artificially in a laboratory", says Piotr Hanczyc, one of the researchers who made the discovery. "By combining them with other molecules, one could create materials with unique characteristics."

The amyloid aggregates are as hard and rigid as steel. The difference is that steel is much heavier and has defined material properties, whereas amyloids can be tuned for specific purposes. By attaching a material's molecules to the dense amyloid, its characteristics change.

"This was already known, but what has not been known is that the amyloids react to multiphoton irradiation", says Piotr Hanczyc. "This opens up new possibilities to also change the nature of the material attached to the amyloids."

The amyloids are shaped like discs, densely piled upon each other. When a material gets merged with these discs, its molecules end up so densely and regularly placed that they can communicate and exchange information. This means completely new possibilities to change a material's characteristics.

Piotr Hanczyc now sees opportunities for collaboration with the material science researchers at Chalmers, for example on solar cell technology.

And although it may still be science fiction, he also believes that one day scientists may use the material properties of amyloid fibrils in research on invisible meta materials.

"An object's ability to reflect light could be altered so that what's behind it gets reflected instead of the object itself, in principle changing the index of light refraction. Kind of like when light hits the surface of water."


Contact: Johanna Wilde
Chalmers University of Technology

Related biology news :

1. New hope for treating Alzheimers Disease: A role for the FKBP52 protein
2. Amyloid beta in the brain of individuals with Alzheimers disease
3. A new gene thought to be the cause in early-onset forms of Alzheimers disease
4. Antioxidant may disrupt Alzheimers disease process
5. Clinical trials for Alzheimers disease preventative drug to begin early 2013
6. Grant program to spur new research on Alzheimers disease by encouraging collaboration
7. VTT and GE Healthcare developing novel biomarkers to predict Alzheimers disease
8. Exercise is key in the fight against Alzheimers disease
9. Chronic inflammation in the brain leads the way to Alzheimers disease
10. Revolutionary project will obtain entire genome sequences in fight against Alzheimers
11. Small molecule may play big role in Alzheimers disease
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Alzheimer substance may be the nanomaterial of tomorrow
(Date:4/11/2017)... 2017 No two people are believed ... New York University Tandon School of Engineering and ... that partial similarities between prints are common enough ... phones and other electronic devices can be more ... lies in the fact that fingerprint-based authentication systems ...
(Date:4/5/2017)... 2017 Today HYPR Corp. , leading ... component of the HYPR platform is officially FIDO® ... security architecture that empowers biometric authentication across Fortune 500 ... secured over 15 million users across the financial services ... home product suites and physical access represent a growing ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... , March 30, 2017  On April 6-7, ... Hack the Genome hackathon at Microsoft,s headquarters ... two-day competition will focus on developing health and wellness ... Hack the Genome is the first ... tremendous. The world,s largest companies in the genomics, tech ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... Singh Biotechnology today announced ... to SBT-100, its novel anti-STAT3 (Signal Transducer and Activator of Transcription 3) B ... to cross the cell membrane and bind intracellular STAT3 and inhibit its function. ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... ... Dr. Bob Harman, founder and CEO of VetStem Biopharma, Inc. spent ... entitled “Stem Cells and Their Regenerative Powers,” was held on August 31st, 2017 ... joined by two human doctors: Peter B. Hanson, M.D., Chief of Orthopedic Surgery, Grossmont ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... ... 13 prestigious awards honoring scientists who have made outstanding contributions to ... symposium during Pittcon 2018, the world’s leading conference and exposition for laboratory science, ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... ... 2017 , ... The Giving Tree Wellness Center announces the ... of consumers who are incorporating medical marijuana into their wellness and health regimens. ... operators of two successful Valley dispensaries, The Giving Tree’s two founders, Lilach Mazor ...
Breaking Biology Technology: