A Supramolecular Ice Growth Inhibitor
MetadataShow full item record
Safranine O, a synthetic dye, was found to inhibit growth of ice at millimolar concentrations with an activity comparable to that of highly evolved antifreeze glycoproteins. Safranine inhibits growth of ice crystals along the crystallographic a-axis, resulting in bipyramidal needles extended along the <0001> directions as well as and plane-specific thermal hysteresis (TH) activity. The interaction of safranine with ice is reversible, distinct from the previously reported behavior of antifreeze proteins. Spectroscopy and molecular dynamics indicate that safranine forms aggregates in aqueous solution at micromolar concentrations. Metadynamics simulations and aggregation theory suggested that as many as 30 safranine molecules were preorganized in stacks at the concentrations where ice growth inhibition was observed. The simulations and single-crystal X-ray structure of safranine revealed regularly spaced amino and methyl substituents in the aggregates, akin to the ice-binding site of antifreeze proteins. Collectively, these observations suggest an unusual link between supramolecular assemblies of small molecules and functional proteins.
This research was supported under the Australian Research Council grants FT130100463 and DP140101776
Open access to this article is currently embargoed until 12 09 2017
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Dincer, Tuna (2000)Lactose is the major carbohydrate in milk. The presence of lactose in whey constitutes a significant pollution problem for dairy factories. At the same time, there is an increasing market for high quality crystalline ...
Rossiter, Angelina Jane (2009)Due to the ductile nature of the sodium nitrate crystal which deforms plastically under high levels of strain, most of the crystal growth studies in aqueous solution have focussed on the influence of tensile strain, ...
Korczynskyj, Dylan (2002)Australian grasstrees are a long-lived group of arborescent, monocotyledonous plants that persist in fire-prone landscapes. Renowned for their capacity to survive fire, and flower soon after, these species have long ...