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Self-Assembly and Molecular Dynamics of Peptide-Functionalized Polyphenylene Dendrimers

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Max-Planck-Institut für Polymerforschung, D-55021 Mainz, Germany
University of Ioannina, Department of Physics, P.O. Box 1186, 451 10 Ioannina, Greece, and Foundation for Research and Technology-Hellas (FORTH), Biomedical Research Institute (BRI)
Cite this: Macromolecules 2006, 39, 26, 9605–9613
Publication Date (Web):December 6, 2006
Copyright © 2006 American Chemical Society

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    Abstract Image

    The self-assembly mechanism and the associated molecular dynamics are studied for a series of poly-l-lysine-functionalized polyphenylene dendrimer melts as a function of the core size (generation), functionality, and polypeptide length using X-rays, solid-state NMR, calorimetry, and dielectric spectroscopy. A striking dependence of the polyphenylene self-assembly on the poly-l-lysine length is shown. In addition, the type (α-helix/β-sheet) of peptide secondary structure is controlled by the packing restrictions imposed by the polyphenylene core. We show that constrained poly-l-lysines can adopt different secondary structures from their linear analogues. The dynamic investigation revealed significant mobility associated solely with the polypeptide through three processes:  a glass transition, a slower process associated with the relaxation of α-helical segments, and a glassy mode whose origin could be resolved by site-specific solid-state NMR techniques. Solid-state NMR studies further indicated a mobility gradient in going from the rigid peptide backbone to the side chains.

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     Corresponding author. E-mail:  [email protected].

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