Enzyme-powered micro- and nanomotors are tiny devices inspired by nature that utilize enzyme-triggered chemical conversion to release energy stored in the chemical bonds of a substrate (fuel) to actuate it into active motion. Compared with conventional chemical micro-/nanomotors, these devices are particularly attractive because they self-propel by utilizing biocompatible fuels, such as glucose, urea, glycerides, and peptides. They have been designed with functional material constituents to efficiently perform tasks related to active targeting, drug delivery and release, biosensing, water remediation, and environmental monitoring. Because only a small number of enzymes have been exploited as bioengines to date, a new generation of multifunctional, enzyme-powered nanorobots will emerge in the near future to selectively search for and utilize water contaminants or disease-related metabolites as fuels. This Minireview highlights recent progress in enzyme-powered micro- and nanomachines.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Organic Chemistry