Bioinspired smart gate-location-controllable single nanochannels: Experiment and theoretical simulation

Huacheng Zhang, Ye Tian, Jue Hou, Xu Hou, Guanglei Hou, Ranwen Ou, Huanting Wang, Lei Jiang

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78 Citations (Scopus)


pH-activated gates intelligently govern the ion transport behaviors of a wide range of bioinspired ion channels, but the mechanisms between the gate locations and the functionalities of the ion channels remain poorly understood. Here, we construct an artificial gate-location-tunable single-nanochannel system to systematically investigate the impact of the gate location on the ion transport property of the biomimetic ion channel. The gate-location-controllable single nanochannels are prepared by asymmetrically grafting pH-responsive polymer gates on one side of single nanochannels with gradual shape transformation. Experimental ion current measurements show that the gating abilities and rectification effects of the pH-gated nanochannels can be gradually altered by precisely locating the artificial pH gates on the different sites of the channels. The experimental gate-location-dependent gating and rectification of ion current in the bioinspired ion channel system is further well confirmed by theoretical simulation. This work, as an example, provides a new avenue to optimize the smart ion transport features of diverse artificial nanogate devices via precisely locating the gates on the appropriate sites of the artificial nanochannels.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12264 - 12273
Number of pages10
JournalACS Nano
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 16 Oct 2015


  • Bioinspired ion channel
  • pH gating
  • Ion current rectification
  • Single nanochannel
  • Tunable gate location

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