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Nanotechnology

Fabrication of tunable silica-mineralized nanotubes using flagella as bio-templates.


PMID 22236516

Abstract

Bacterial flagella are particularly attractive bio-templates for nanotubes due to their tubular structures and small inner and outer diameters. In this work, flagella isolated from Salmonella typhimurium were used as templates for silica-mineralized nanotubes. The process involved pretreatment of flagella with aminopropyltriethoxysilane (APTES), followed by the addition of tetraethoxysilane (TEOS). By controlling the concentration of TEOS and the reaction time, we developed a simple and precise method for creating silica-mineralized flagella nanotubes (SMFNs) with various thicknesses of the silica layer. It is demonstrated that flagella can be utilized for the fabrication of SMFNs with tunable thickness. A thicker silica layer was obtained as the concentration ratio of TEOS and reaction time was increased. The present experimental evidence has shown the feasibility of using such fabrication techniques to manufacture nanotubes without genetic modification of flagella which retain the original morphology.