De Zotti, Corvi, Gatto, Di Napoli, Mazzuca, Palleschi, Placidi, Biondi, Crisma, Formaggio, Toniolo, Venanzi (2019) Controlling the Formation of Peptide Films: Fully Developed Helical Peptides are Required to Obtain a Homogenous Coating over a Large Area ChemPlusChem 84(11) 1688-1696


The influence of conformational dynamics on the self-assembly process of a conformationally constrained analogue of the natural antimicrobial peptide Trichogin GA IV was analysed by spectroscopic methods, microscopy imaging at nanometre resolution, and molecular dynamics simulations. The formation of peptide films at the air/water interface and their deposition on a graphite or a mica substrate were investigated. A combination of experimental evidence with molecular dynamics simulation was used to demonstrate that only the fully developed helical structure of the analogue promotes formation of ordered aggregates that nucleate the growth of micrometric rods, which give rise to homogenous coating over wide regions of the hydrophilic mica. This work proves the influence of helix flexibility on peptide self-organization and orientation on surfaces, key steps in the design of bioinspired organic/inorganic hybrid materials. © 2019 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.