|Engineering Geobacter pili to produce metal:organic filaments.
|Year of Publication
|Szmuc E, Walker DJF, Kireev D, Akinwande D, Lovley DR, Keitz B, Ellington A
|2023 Feb 15
|Biosensing Techniques, Electron Transport, Fimbriae, Bacterial, Geobacter, Gold, Metal Nanoparticles
The organized self-assembly of conductive biological structures holds promise for creating new bioelectronic devices. In particular, Geobacter sulfurreducens type IVa pili have proven to be a versatile material for fabricating protein nanowire-based devices. To scale the production of conductive pili, we designed a strain of Shewanella oneidensis that heterologously expressed abundant, conductive Geobacter pili when grown aerobically in liquid culture. S. oneidensis expressing a cysteine-modified pilin, designed to enhance the capability to bind to gold, generated conductive pili that self-assembled into biohybrid filaments in the presence of gold nanoparticles. Elemental composition analysis confirmed the filament-metal interactions within the structures, which were several orders of magnitude larger than previously described metal:organic filaments. The results demonstrate that the S. oneidensis chassis significantly advances the possibilities for facile conductive protein nanowire design and fabrication.