Three-dimensional control of protein patterning in microfabricated devices

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DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/nl0507111
Reference G. Romet-Lemonne, M.M. Duijn and M. Dogterom, Three-dimensional control of protein patterning in microfabricated devices, Nano Lett. 5, 2350-2354 (2005)

We present a new procedure that allows for the controlled patterning of functional proteins on the sidewalls of three-dimensional microfabricated chambers. We build microchambers with walls containing gold areas of a defined submicrometer size, to which proteins can be bound specifically, via thiol chemistry. We tested our system by observing the gliding of microtubules along motor-coated microchamber sidewalls and find that introducing an intermediate multilayer of proteins greatly enhances motor protein activity. This combination of spatial confinement and three-dimensional patterning of protein activity opens up new possibilities for the in vitro study of cellular processes, as well as for the development of guided transport mechanisms in nanodevices