Nanomechanics of streptavidin hubs for molecular materials

Minkyu Kim, Chien Chung Wang, Fabrizio Benedetti, Mahir Rabbi, Vann Bennett, Piotr E. Marszalek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


A new strategy is reported for creating protein-based nanomaterials by genetically fusing large polypeptides to monomeric streptavidin and exploiting the propensity of streptavidin monomers(SM) to self-assemble into stable tetramers. We have characterized the mechanical properties of streptavidin-linked structures and measured, for the first time, the mechanical strength of streptavidin tetramers themselves. Using streptavidin tetramers as molecular hubs offers a unique opportunity to create a variety of well-defined, self-assembled protein-based (nano)materials with unusual mechanical properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5684-5688
Number of pages5
JournalAdvanced Materials
Issue number47
StatePublished - Dec 15 2011


  • biomaterials
  • molecular self-assembly
  • polypeptides
  • protein-based materials
  • scanning probe microscopy
  • single molecule force spectroscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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