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Engineering protein-based biomaterials is extremely challenging in bioelectronics, medicine and materials science, as mechanical, electrical and optical properties need to be merged to biocompatibility and resistance to biodegradation. An effective strategy is the engineering of physiological processes in situ, by addition of new properties to endogenous components. Here we show that a green fluorescent semiconducting thiophene dye, DTTO, promotes, in vivo, the biogenesis of fluorescent conductive protein microfibers via metabolic pathways. By challenging the simple freshwater polyp Hydra vulgaris with DTTO, we demonstrate the stable incorporation of the dye into supramolecular protein-dye co-assembled microfibers without signs of toxicity. An integrated multilevel analysis including morphological, optical, spectroscopical and electrical characterization shows electrical conductivity of biofibers, opening the …
Publication date: 
30 Mar 2020

Maria Moros, Francesca Di Maria, Principia Dardano, Giuseppina Tommasini, Hiram Castillo-Michel, Alessandro Kovtun, Mattia Zangoli, Martina Blasio, Luca De Stefano, Angela Tino, Giovanna Barbarella, Claudia Tortiglione

Biblio References: 
Pages: 101022