Peptoid technology for molecular nanosystems — My review is now online

by Eric Drexler on 2011/11/07

My invited review “Peptoids at the 7th Summit: Toward Macromolecular Systems Engineering” [pdf] kicks off the peptoid special issue of Biopolymers: Peptide Science.

Astoundingly, all the papers are open access.

Here’s the abstract:

Peptoids at the 7th Summit:
Toward Macromolecular Systems Engineering

Methods for facile synthesis of extraordinarily diverse peptide-like oligomers have placed peptoids at the center of a broad and vibrant area of foldamer science and technology. The 7th Peptoid Summit offered a perspective on the current state of peptoid science and technology and on prospects for engineering supramolecular assemblies that rival the complexity of biomolecular systems. Methods for engineering biomolecular systems based on DNA and protein are advancing rapidly, building a technology platform for engineering increasingly large and complex self-assembled nanosystems. A comparative review of the physical basis for DNA, protein, and peptoid engineering indicates that the characteristics of peptoids suit them for a strong role in developing self-assembled nanosystems. Physical parallels between peptoids and proteins indicate that peptoid engineering, like protein engineering, will require specialized software to support design. Access to novel side-chain functionality will enable peptoid designers to exploit novel binding interactions, including many that have been discovered and exploited in crystal engineering, a field that has extensively explored the self-assembly of small organic molecules to form well-ordered structures. Developments in DNA, protein, and inorganic nanotechnologies are converging to provide a technology platform for the design and fabrication of complex, functional, atomically precise nanosystems. Peptoid-based foldamer technologies can contribute to this convergence, expanding the scope of the emerging field of atomically precise macromolecular nanosystems.

As you can see, the paper goes beyond peptoids (a favorite topic here) to examine the broader context of foldamer design for engineering atomically precise systems. Read it for a summary of some important developments and prospects.

(BTW, the followup post on my Moscow trip should be up soon.)

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