Iron oxide crystal formation on a substrate modified with the Mms6 protein from magnetotactic bacteria

Atsushi Arakaki*, Fukashi Masuda, Tadashi Matsunaga

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

5 Citations (Scopus)


Mms6 is a small acidic protein which is tightly bound to magnetite in the bacterium Magnetospirillum magneticum AMB-1. Mms6 has been previously shown to promote iron-binding capacity as well as modulate the size and morphology of magnetic iron oxide crystals in vitro. In this study, we synthesized iron oxide crystals by using a monolayer-modified substrate. A self-assembled monolayer of octadecyltrimethoxysilane was modified on a silicon substrate. Recombinant Mms6 protein was attached to the substrate through the hydrophobic interactions between the protein molecules and the monolayer. The immobilization of protein molecules on the substrate surface was confirmed by fluorescent labeling of these molecules and subsequent fluorescence microscopy. This protein-modified substrate was then used as a template for iron oxide crystal formation in a ferrous solution. Scanning electron microscopy revealed site-specific formation of iron oxide crystals in substrate regions with immobilized proteins. This use of proteins might provide an alternative method for the bottom-up fabrication of nano-sized magnetic particles.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationStructure-Property Relationships in Biomineralized and Biomimetic Composites
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes
Event2009 MRS Spring Meeting - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: 2009 Apr 142009 Apr 17


Other2009 MRS Spring Meeting
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, CA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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