The Diatom Peptide R5 Fabricates Two-Dimensional Titanium Dioxide Nanosheets

Mikkel Bregnhøj, Helmut Lutz, Steven J. Roeters, Ingo Lieberwirth, Rolf Mertig, Tobias Weidner*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Diatoms use peptides based on the protein silaffin to fabricate their silica cell walls. To the interest of material scientists, silaffin peptides can also produce titanium dioxide nanoparticles. Peptide-based synthesis could present an environmentally friendly route to the synthesis of titanium dioxide nanomaterials with potential applications in water splitting and for biocompatible materials design. Two-dimensional nanomaterials have exceptional surface-to-volume ratios and are particularly suited for these applications. We here demonstrate how the silaffin peptide R5 can precipitate free-standing and self-supported sheets of titanium dioxide at the air-water interface, which are stable over tens of micrometers.

Original languageEnglish
JournalThe Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters
Pages (from-to)5025-5029
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022


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