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Controlled Adsorption Of Cytochrome C To Nanostructured Gold Surfaces

Inês Gomes, Maria J. Feio, Nuno C. Santos, Peter Eaton, Ana Paula Serro, Benilde Saramago, Eulália Pereira, Ricardo Franco
Published 2012 · Chemistry
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Controlled electrostatic physisorption of horse heart cytochrome c (Cyt c) onto nanostructured gold surfaces was investigated using Quartz-Crystal Microbalance measurements in planar gold surfaces with or without functionalization using a self-assembled monolayer (SAM) of the alkanethiol mercaptoundecanoic acid (MUA). MUA is a useful functionalization ligand for gold surfaces, shedding adsorbed biomolecules from the excessive electron density of the metal. A parallel analysis was conducted in the corresponding curved surfaces of 15 nm gold nanoparticles (AuNPs), using zeta-potential and UV– visible spectroscopy. Atomic Force Microscopy of both types of functionalized gold surfaces with a MUA SAM, allowed for visualization of Cyt c deposits on the nanostructured gold surface. The amount of Cyt c adsorbed onto the gold surface could be controlled by the solution pH. For the assays conducted at pH 4.5, when MUA SAM- functionalized planar gold surfaces are positive or neutral, and Cyt c has a positive net charge, only 13 % of the planar gold surface area was coated with protein. In contrast, at pH 7.4, when MUA SAM-functionalized planar gold surfaces and Cyt c have opposite charges, a protein coverage of 28 % could be observed implying an adsorption process strongly governed by electrostatic forces. Cyt c adsorption on planar and curved gold surfaces are found to be greatly favored by the presence of a MUA-capping layer. In particular, on the AuNPs, the binding constant is three times larger than the binding constant obtained for the original citrate-capped AuNPs.
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