Quantum dots functionalised artificial peptides bioinspired to the D1 protein from the Photosystem II of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii for endocrine disruptor optosensing

Giampaolo Barone, Fabrizio Lo Celso, Amina Antonacci, Mehmet Turemis, Daniele Zappi, Gabriele Varani, Daniele Zappi, Fabrizio Lo Celso, Maria Teresa Giardi, Pietro Calandra, Viviana Scognamiglio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Herein we describe the design and synthesis of novel artificial peptides mimicking the plastoquinone binding niche of the D1 protein from the green photosynthetic alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, also able to bind herbicides. In particular, molecular dynamics (MD) simulations were performed to model in silico the behaviour of three peptides, D1Pep70-H, D1Pep70-S264K and D1Pep70-S268C, as genetic variants with different affinity towards the photosynthetic herbicide atrazine. Then the photosynthetic peptides were functionalised with quantum dots for the development of a hybrid optosensor for the detection of atrazine, one of the most employed herbicides for weed control in agriculture as well as considered as a putative endocrine disruptor case study. The excellent agreement between computational and experimental results self consistently shows resistance or super-sensitivity toward the atrazine target, with detection limits in the μg/L concentration range, meeting the requirements of E.U. legislation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Analytical Chemistry

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