Event Title

A Simulation of Protein Hydrogel Mechanics

Mentor 1

Ionel Popa

Location

Union Wisconsin Room

Start Date

29-4-2016 1:30 PM

End Date

29-4-2016 3:30 PM

Description

Protein hydrogels serve as a platform for artificial tissue culture and other smart biomaterials. A protein hydrogel is a network of cross-linked protein chains that shows a unique response due to the force-induced (un)folding of its constituent domains. Here, we investigate the effect of force on the mechano-chemistry of hydrogels composed of tandem modular proteins. We report a mathematical model that takes into account the folding and unfolding of protein domains as a function of force and predicts the change in length of protein hydrogels due to a change in force. Our results reproduce the experimentally measured hysteresis and stress-relaxation behavior, and explain how protein orientation and domain folding affect the elasticity of these hydrogels due to different forces. Furthermore, as we increase the number of proteins contained in our simulation we find a smooth transition from a probabilistic to a deterministic behavior. This model is the first step toward predicting and formulating new protein-based materials, such as those needed for artificial skin and 3-D organ printing.

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Apr 29th, 1:30 PM Apr 29th, 3:30 PM

A Simulation of Protein Hydrogel Mechanics

Union Wisconsin Room

Protein hydrogels serve as a platform for artificial tissue culture and other smart biomaterials. A protein hydrogel is a network of cross-linked protein chains that shows a unique response due to the force-induced (un)folding of its constituent domains. Here, we investigate the effect of force on the mechano-chemistry of hydrogels composed of tandem modular proteins. We report a mathematical model that takes into account the folding and unfolding of protein domains as a function of force and predicts the change in length of protein hydrogels due to a change in force. Our results reproduce the experimentally measured hysteresis and stress-relaxation behavior, and explain how protein orientation and domain folding affect the elasticity of these hydrogels due to different forces. Furthermore, as we increase the number of proteins contained in our simulation we find a smooth transition from a probabilistic to a deterministic behavior. This model is the first step toward predicting and formulating new protein-based materials, such as those needed for artificial skin and 3-D organ printing.