Sequence-specific control of inorganic nanomaterials morphologies by biomolecules

Yiming Wang, Nitya Sai Reddy Satyavolu, Yi Lu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Controlling morphologies of nanomaterials such as their shapes and surface features has been a major endeavor in the field of nanoscale science and engineering, because the morphology is a major determining factor for functional properties of nanomaterials. Compared with conventional capping ligands based on organic molecules or polymers, the programmability of biomolecules makes them attractive alternatives for morphology-controlled nanomaterials synthesis. Towards the goal of predictable control of the synthesis, many studies have been performed on using different sequences of biomolecules to generate specific nanomaterial morphology. In this review, we summarize recent studies in the past few years on using DNA and peptide sequences to control inorganic nanomaterial morphologies, focusing on both case studies and mechanistic investigations. The functional properties resulting from such a sequence-specific control are also discussed, along with strengths and limitations of different approaches to achieving the goal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)158-169
Number of pages12
JournalCurrent Opinion in Colloid and Interface Science
StatePublished - Nov 2018


  • Bio-inorganic interface
  • Biomimetic synthesis
  • Sequence specificity
  • Shape-control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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