The American Chemical Society (ACS) recently announced that a manuscript by
McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine
affiliated faculty member Anna Balazs, PhD (pictured), Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering and the Robert v. d. Luft Professor, Department of Chemical & Petroleum Engineering, University of Pittsburgh, published in Langmuir
entitled, “Designing Synthetic Microcapsules that Undergo Biomimetic Communication and Autonomous Motion,” has been chosen for an ACS Editors’ Choice from all of the ACS journals.
From the paper’s abstract, inspired by the collective behavior of slime molds and amoebas, Dr. Balazs and colleagues designed synthetic cell-like objects that move and self-organize in response to self-generated chemical gradients, thereby exhibiting autochemotaxis. Using computational modeling, the team specifically focused on microcapsules that encompass a permeable shell and are localized on an adhesive surface in solution. Lacking any internal machinery, these spherical, fluid-filled shells might resemble the earliest protocells. These microcapsules do, however, encase particles that can diffuse through the outer shell and into the surrounding fluid.
The description given for ACS Editors’ Choice papers is as follows: One new peer-reviewed research article from any ACS journal will be selected to be freely available every day; the selection of these articles is based on recommendations by the scientific editors of ACS journals from around the world. As a service to our global community of researchers, these articles will remain open for all to access and read.
Illustration: McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine.
Bio: Dr. Anna Balazs
Full Text (Designing synthetic microcapsules that undergo biomimetic communication and autonomous motion. Victor V. Yashin, German V. Kolmakov, Henry Shum, and Anna C. Balazs. Langmuir; July 28, 2015.)