CBE Seminar: Understanding and Exploiting the Interactions of Car9-based Solid Binding Proteins with Silica

652 Engineering Tower
Francois Baneyx

Department of Chemical Engineering
University of Washington, Seattle

Abstract: Solid binding proteins are genetically engineered chimera that incorporate one or more combinatorially selected solid-binding peptides (SBP) at defined locations of their framework. These macromolecules are powerful tools to study the fundamentals of biotic-abiotic interactions because they allow for SBP presentation within solubilizing and structurally defined contexts. They are also useful to control inorganic morphogenesis and to assemble hybrid architectures that harness the “built-in” function and topology of the host scaffold. In this talk, I will describe some of the practical applications of a versatile silica-binding peptide called Car9, and how we used a deep integration of kinetic modeling, Rosetta calculations, molecular dynamics simulations, mutagenesis, SPR measurements and high-resolution AFM to gain a detailed understanding of its interaction with silica surfaces. I will also describe how we are exploiting these insights to build solid binding proteins that support cycles of silica nanoparticle assembly and disassembly upon small changes of pH, and how we can tune the characteristics of the hybrid aggregates by manipulating solution conditions, particle size and SBP sequence.

Bio: François Baneyx is the Charles W.H. Matthaei Professor of Chemical Engineering at the University of Washington where he serves as interim vice provost for innovation, director of the CoMotion Innovation Hub and director of the Center for the Science of Synthesis across Scales, a Department of Energy (DOE) Energy Frontier Research Center. He previously served as chair of the Department of Chemical Engineering, director of the University of Washington Center for Nanotechnology, site director of the Pacific Northwest node of the National Science Foundation (NSF) National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network and co-director of the Genetically Engineered Materials Science and Engineering Center, an NSF MRSEC. Baneyx earned a doctorate in chemical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin and joined the University of Washington in 1992 after postdoctoral work at DuPont. His research interests are highly interdisciplinary and lie at the confluence of biotechnology, nanotechnology, materials science and molecular engineering. He has authored or co-authored over 105 publications, holds four U.S. patents on three technology suites and is co-founder of the start-up Proteios. Baneyx is an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Institute of Medical and Biomedical Engineering, the American Academy of Microbiology, and a member of the Washington State Academy of Sciences.

Hosted by: Alon Gorodetsky and Plamen Atanassov