Prototissues comprise free-standing 3D networks of interconnected protocell consortia that communicate and display synergistic functions. Significantly, they can be constructed from functional molecules and materials, providing unprecedented opportunities to design tissue-like architectures that can do more than simply mimic living tissues. They could function under extreme conditions and exhibit a wide range of mechanical properties and bio-inspired metabolic functions. In this perspective, I will start by describing recent advancements in the design and synthetic construction of prototissues. I will then discuss the next challenges and the future impact of this emerging research field, which is destined to find applications in the most diverse areas of science and technology, from biomedical science to environmental science, and soft robotics.
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The plasma membrane of lymphocytes is highly compartmentalized in so-called nanodomains or protein islands. Proteins such as Caveolin-1 (pink), tetraspanins (blue) or flotillins (violet) define these protein islands and thereby regulate the functioning of the immune system. In this issue (see pages 2387–2397), Schaffer and Minguet discuss the importance of these protein islands regarding lymphocyte activation and the development of immunopathologies. This cover artwork has been created by Susana Minguet.
Perspective| November 06 2020
From protocells to prototissues: a materials chemistry approach
School of Chemistry, University of Bristol, Bristol BS8 1TS, U.K.
Correspondence: Pierangelo Gobbo (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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Biochem Soc Trans (2020) 48 (6): 2579–2589.
May 27 2020
September 29 2020
October 05 2020
Pierangelo Gobbo; From protocells to prototissues: a materials chemistry approach. Biochem Soc Trans 18 December 2020; 48 (6): 2579–2589. doi: https://doi.org/10.1042/BST20200310
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