The present review focuses on a unique biomolecular construction kit including surface-layer (S-layer) proteins as basic building blocks and patterning elements, but also major classes of biological molecules such as (membrane) proteins, lipids, and heteropolysaccharides for the design of functional S-layer supported lipid membranes. The biomimetic approach copying the supramolecular building principle of most archaeal cell envelopes composed of a plasma membrane and a closely associated S-layer lattice has resulted in robust lipid membranes. Reconstitution of responsive transmembrane proteins has been demonstrated in lipid membranes generated on S-layer-coated substrates and electrodes. This is a particular challenge as one-third of all proteins are membrane proteins such as pore-forming proteins, ion channels or receptors. Hence membrane proteins are a preferred target for pharmaceuticals (currently more than 60% of all consumed drugs). This novel type of supported lipid membrane is seen as one of the most innovative strategies in membrane protein-based nanobiotechnology with potential applications that range from pharmaceutical (high-throughput) drug screening over lipid (bio)chips to the detection of biological warfare agents.
Keywords: Crystalline surface layer proteins, biomimetics, biosensor, bottom-up strategy, nanobiotechnology, supported lipid membranes
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