May 7, 2015 - 12:00 pm
May 7, 2015 - 1:00 pm
AddressScopia Desktop, Victoria University of Wellington - RB901, University of Auckland - Engineering 403-406, University of Canterbury – Psychology 164 View map
Dr Tamsyn Hilder
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Computational Biophysics Group, Research School of Biology, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia and
Visiting Research Fellow, School of Chemistry and Physical Sciences
Victoria University of Wellington
Biological ion channels are selectively permeable to specific ionic species, and regulate the flow of ions across the cell membrane. They maintain the resting membrane potential, generate propagated action potentials in nerves and control a wide variety of cell functions. There is increasing attention in designing and fabricating synthetic nanotubes which can mimic some of the key functions of biological ion channels. Moreover, nanomaterials which can block certain biological ion channels may provide a new target for the treatment of various neurological and muscular diseases, such as epilepsy. Studies such as those presented here may lead to applications such as new pharmaceuticals, water purification devices, and ultra-sensitive biosensors. However, the success of these applications relies on their biocompatibility and ability to insert into and remain stable in the cell membrane. This presentation will highlight results of molecular and stochastic dynamics simulations and demonstrate the potential of biologically inspired nanomaterials.