. Nano Technology News .

A new genre of 'intelligent' micro- and nanomotors
by Staff Writers
Washington DC (SPX) Feb 04, 2013

File image.

Enzymes, workhorse molecules of life that underpin almost every biological process, may have a new role as "intelligent" micro- and nanomotors with applications in medicine, engineering and other fields.

That's the topic of a report in the Journal of the American Chemical Society, showing that single molecules of common enzymes can generate enough force to cause movement in specific directions.

Peter J. Butler, Ayusman Sen and colleagues point out that enzymes - proteins that jump-start chemical reactions - are the basis of natural biological motors essential to life.

Scientists long have wondered whether a single enzyme molecule, the smallest machine that could possibly exist, might be able to generate enough force to cause its own movement in a specific direction.

"Positive answers to these questions," they explain, "have important implications in areas ranging from biological transport to the design of 'intelligent,' enzyme-powered, autonomous nano- and micromotors, which are expected to find applications in bottom-up assembly of structures, pattern formation, cargo (drug) delivery at specific locations, roving sensors and related functions."

They provide the positive answers in experiments with two common enzymes called catalase and urease. Catalase protects the body from harmful effects of hydrogen peroxide formed naturally in the course of life. Urease, found in many plants, converts urea to ammonia and carbon dioxide. The researchers show that these two enzymes, in the presence of their respective substrate (hydrogen peroxide or urea, which acts as fuel), show movement.

More significantly, the movement becomes directional through the imposition of a substrate gradient, a form of chemotaxis. Chemotaxis is what attracts living things toward sources of food. The researchers also show that movement causes chemically interconnected enzymes to be drawn together; a form of predator-prey behavior at the nanoscale.


Related Links
American Chemical Society
Nano Technology News From SpaceMart.com
Computer Chip Architecture, Technology and Manufacture

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Get Our Free Newsletters
Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear


Flat boron by the numbers
Houston TX (SPX) Feb 01, 2013
It would be a terrible thing if laboratories striving to grow graphene from carbon atoms kept winding up with big pesky diamonds. "That would be trouble, cleaning out the diamonds so you could do some real work," said Rice University theoretical physicist Boris Yakobson, chuckling at the absurd image. Yet something like that keeps happening to experimentalists working to grow two-dim ... read more

The humble 'virtual chimney' fences that could reduce the impact of airport pollution

JAL says nine-month net profit slips, ups year forecast

India gives Seychelles Dornier aircraft

100th F-35 On Lockheed Martin's Production Line

Reshuffle for Tiangong

China to launch 20 spacecrafts in 2013

US may use preemptive cyber strikes: report

China Communist paper rejects hacking allegations

Hacking incidents ignite fears over China

Hacking case puts Dutch man in US prison

Obama's energy secretary stepping down

Emission trading schemes limit green consumerism

Latest Ways to Make Your Business Energy Efficient

China coal plant shut by health chiefs

Sinopec aims for cleaner fuel

Hungary moves ahead on E.ON purchase

Deuterium Uptake in Magnetic Fusion Devices with Lithium Conditioned Carbon Walls

Oil prices rise after upbeat US, China data

Commander sees women in elite US special forces

Canada receives upgraded LAV III

Marines Get Improved Precision Extended Range Munitions

Raytheon, US Navy demonstrate new dual targeting capability for JSOW C-1

A new genre of 'intelligent' micro- and nanomotors

Flat boron by the numbers

Notre Dame studies benefits and threats of nanotechnology research

A nano-gear in a nano-motor inside

Engineers Building Hard-working Mining Robot

Robofish Grace glides with the greatest of ease

Nexter joins robot development business

Game on: European student codes reach ISS

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2012 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement