Increasing dispersion stability with biocompatible small molecules

Modulating particle aggregation within the cell and in industrial formulations

The stability of dispersions is an essential requirement in the formulation of several industrial products, from coatings, and ceramics to food and pharma. While the science and engineering of the stability of colloidal particles is well developed, the stability of proteins remains challenging, particularly at high concentrations. This is not only an important issue for protein-based therapies, but it has also recently become a topical issue in biological research, where biomolecular condensates have emerged as important organizers of cellular biochemistry. In this project, we aim at obtaining a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms, promoting or antagonizing dispersion stability of protein systems to exploit them for industrial applications. To this end, we will build on recent observations emerging from our labs in Phase 2 that the phase behavior and aggregation of dispersed nanoparticles and/or molecules can be influenced by small molecules or elastic properties, and we will take advantage of a wide range of experimental and computational/theoretical approaches that will allow us to investigate these processes at all relevant time and length scales.

Main investigator

Involved people