P. Steinbauer, A. Rohatschek, O.G. Andriotis, N. Bouropoulos, R. Liska, P.J. Thurner, S. Baudis:
"Single-Molecule Force Spectroscopy Reveals Adhesion-by-Demand in Statherin at the Protein-Hydroxyapatite Interface";
Langmuir, 36 (2020), 44; S. 13292 - 13300.

Kurzfassung englisch:
Achieving strong adhesion in wet environments remains a technological challenge in biomedical applications demanding biocompatibility. Attention for adhesive motifs meeting such demands has largely been focused on marine organisms. However, bioadhesion to inorganic surfaces is also present in the human body, in the hard tissues of teeth and bones, and is mediated through serines (S). The specific amino acid sequence DpSpSEEKC has been previously suggested to be responsible for the strong binding abilities of the protein statherin to hydroxyapatite, where pS denotes phosphorylated serine. Notably, similar sequences are present in the non-collagenous bone protein osteopontin (OPN) and the mussel foot protein 5 (Mefp5). OPN has previously been shown to promote fracture toughness and physiological damage formation. Here, we investigated the adhesion strength of the motif D(pS)(pS)EEKC on substrates of hydroxyapatite, TiO2, and mica using atomic force microscopy (AFM) single-molecule force spectroscopy (SMFS). Specifically, we investigated the dependence of adhesion force on phosphorylation of serines by comparing findings with the unphosphorylated variant DSSEEKC. Our results show that high adhesion forces of over 1 nN on hydroxyapatite and on TiO2 are only present for the phosphorylated variant D(pS)(pS)EEKC. This warrants further exploitation of this motif or similar residues in technological applications. Further, the dependence of adhesion force on phosphorylation suggests that biological systems potentially employ an adhesion-by-demand mechanism via expression of enzymes that up- or down-regulate phosphorylation, to increase or decrease adhesion forces, respectively.

strong adhesion, biomedical applications demanding biocompatibility, bioadhesion to inorganic surfaces, human body, hard tissues of teeth and bones, non-collagenous bone protein osteopontin (OPN), mussel foot protein 5 (Mefp5), adhesion-by-demand

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