High yield formation of lipid bilayer shells around silicon nanowires in aqueous solution
L. Römhildt, A. Gang, L. Baraban, J. Opitz, and G. Cuniberti
Nanotechnology 24, 355601 (2013)
The combination of nanoscaled materials and biological self-assembly is a key step for the development of novel approaches for biotechnology and bionanoelectronic devices. Here we propose a route to merge these two subsystems and report on the formation of highly concentrated aqueous solutions of silanized silicon nanowires wrapped in a lipid bilayer shell. We developed protocols and investigated the dynamics of lipid films on both planar surfaces and silicon nanowires using fluorescence recovery after photobleaching, demonstrating fully intact and fluid bilayers without the presence of a lipid molecule reservoir. Finally, the experimental setup allowed for in situ observation of spontaneous bilayer formation around the nanowire by lipid diffusion from a vesicle to the nanowire. Such aqueous solutions of lipid coated nanowires are a versatile tool for characterization purposes and are relevant for newly emerging bioinspired electronics and nanosensorics.