Self-assembled peptide nanotubes are uniquely rigid bioinspired supramolecular structures Academic Article uri icon


  • We recently presented a novel class of self-assembled diphenylalanine-based peptide nanotubes. Here, for the first time, we present their mechanical properties, which we directly measured through indentation type experiments using atomic force microscopy. We find that the averaged point stiffness of the nanotubes is 160 N/m, and that they have a correspondingly high Young's modulus of approximately 19 GPa, as calculated by finite element analysis. This high value places these peptide nanotubes among the stiffest biological materials presently known, making them attractive building blocks for the design and assembly of biocompatible nanodevices.

publication date

  • January 1, 2005