-Conjugated small molecules based on a benzothieno[3,2-b]benzothiophene (BTBT) unit are of great research interest in the development of solution-processable semiconducting materials owing to their excellent charge-transport characteristics. However, the BTBT -core has yet to be demonstrated in the form of electro-active one-dimensional (1D) nanowires that are self-assembled in aqueous media for potential use in bioelectronics and tissue engineering. Here we report the design, synthesis, and self-assembly of benzothienobenzothiophene (BTBT)peptide conjugates, the BTBTpeptide (BTBT-C3COHN-Ahx-VVAGKK-Am) and the C8-BTBTpeptide (C8-BTBT-C3COHN-Ahx-VVAGKK-Am), as -sheet forming amphiphilic molecules, which self-assemble into highly uniform nanofibers in water with diameters of 1113(1) nm and micron-size lengths. Spectroscopic characterization studies demonstrate the J-type interactions among the BTBT molecules within the hydrophobic core of the self-assembled nanofibers yielding an electrical conductivity as high as 6.0 106 S cm1. The BTBT -core is demonstrated, for the first time, in the formation of self-assembled peptide 1D nanostructures in aqueous media for potential use in tissue engineering, bioelectronics and (opto)electronics. The conductivity achieved here is one of the highest reported to date in a non-doped state.
Nanoscale – Royal Society of Chemistry
Published: May 18, 2018
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