Hung Nguyen’s research is featured on the cover of the peer-reviewed journal Advanced Healthcare Materials. An assistant professor of chemical engineering and materials science, Nguyen investigates the self-assembly of biological and biomimetic nanoscale materials based on amino acids and nucleic acids for applications in nanotechnology, drug delivery, tissue engineering, gene therapy, disease diagnostics, antiviral therapeutics and imaging agent development.
The Advanced Healthcare Materials journal featured Nguyen’s study involving peptide amphiphiles, an emerging class of self-assembling molecules. He and his team, including first author graduate student Iris Fu, an NSF Graduate Research Fellow, used simulations to examine the self-assembly process in detail.
Peptide amphiphiles are molecular building blocks that self-assemble into nanostructures as either cylindrical nanofibers or spherical micelles in response to specific physiological stimuli. Such morphological transition is captured by large-scale molecular dynamics simulations in examining spontaneous self-assembly, starting from random configurations. The study can potentially aide the design and development of biomaterials such as hydrogels for use in drug delivery, diagnostic medicine, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine.
The full article can be read here: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/adhm.201370049/abstract