Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

While bio-inspired synthesis offers great potential for controlling nucleation and growth of inorganic particles, precisely tuning biomolecule-particle interactions is a long-standing challenge. Herein, we used variations in peptoid sequence to manipulate peptoid-Au interaction, leading to synthesis of concave five-fold twinned, five-pointed Au nanostars via a process of repeated particle attachment and facet stabilization. Ex situ and liquid-phase TEM observations show that a balance between particle attachment biased to occur near the star points, preferential growth along the [100] direction, and stabilization of (111) facets is critical to forming star-shaped particles. Molecular simulations predict that interaction strengths between peptoids and distinct Au facets differ significantly and thus can alter attachment kinetics and surface energies to form the stars. This work provides new insights into how sequence-defined ligands affect particle growth to regulate crystal morphology.

Original publication




Journal article


Angewandte Chemie (International ed. in English)

Publication Date



Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, physical science division, UNITED STATES.