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BIOSCOPE Report Summary

Project ID: 505211
Funded under: FP6-NMP
Country: Sweden

Final Report Summary - BIOSCOPE (Self-reporting biological nanosystems to study and control bio-molecular mechanisms on the single molecule level)

The BIOSCOPE project aimed to develop new nanoscale tools, allowing unprecedented insight into biomolecular mechanisms at biological interfaces on the scale of single molecules. The project benefited from the synergy between recent advances in nanotechnology and the adaptive dynamic behaviour of many natural and artificial biological systems, in order to involve the biomolecular system itself as part of the nanoscopic instrument, reporting to the outside world in various ways about its current local state, thereby constructing a self-reporting system. The focus was on selected enzymes, including lipases and proteases, which were of fundamental and commercial interest. More specifically, the project objectives were to:
1. develop instrumentation and methods for the manipulation of enzymes and enzyme activity at the nanoscale, providing insight into the biomolecular mechanisms on a single molecule level;
2. develop novel forms of integration of enzymes and non-biological systems, such as nanoparticles, artificial membranes, electrical field or force field traps;
3. confine several enzymes to surfaces of nanoparticles or membranes on a scale of less than 10 nm, so as to achieve a self-organised assembly with concerted, controllable bioaction, superior to the simple sum of the same individual enzymes.

All technological advances were based on the fundamental understanding of biomolecular mechanisms on a single molecule scale and were achieved through immobilisation of different biomolecular systems to nanoscopic objects, as well as the chemical immobilisation of enzymes to enzyme-substrate surfaces via a flexible linker. The initiative was multidisciplinary, involving physics, biology, surface and colloid chemistry, synthesis and biochemistry and, finally, a combination of a range of experimental techniques for reporting on nanoscale organisation. As a result, an innovative and intensive European nanotechnology industry was created, and the uptake of nanotechnologies in the existing industrial sector was promoted, thus advancing European cutting edge research in the sector. Finally, it was anticipated that any future improvement of specialised or more bulk molecular products would dramatically increase the economic potential of BIOSCOPE.

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