BACKGROUND The incorporation of silica within the plant cell wall has been well documented by botanists and materials scientists; however, the means by which plants are able to transport silicon and control its polymerization, together with the roles of silica in situ, are not fully understood. RECENT PROGRESS Recent studies into the mechanisms by which… (More)
All metazoan animals comprise a body plan of different complexity. Since--especially based on molecular and cell biological data--it is well established that all metazoan phyla, including the Porifera (sponges), evolved from a common ancestor the search for common, basic principles of pattern formation (body plan) in all phyla began. Common to all metazoan… (More)
Using self-assembly, nanoscale materials can be fabricated from the bottom up. Opals and inverse opals are examples of self-assembled nanomaterials made from crystallizing colloidal particles. As self-assembly requires a high level of control, it is challenging to use building blocks with anisotropic geometry to form complex opals, which limits the possible… (More)
A new method for the stepwise synthesis of propylamines containing fragments of N-methyl propylamine as found in diatom bioextracts is presented and their activity in silicic acid condensation is described.
The process of biofouling of marine structures and substrates, such as platforms or ship hulls, proceeds in multiple steps. Soon after the formation of an initial conditioning film, formed via the adsorption of organic particles to natural or man-made substrates, a population of different bacterial taxa associates under the formation of a biofilm. These… (More)
Porous materials display interesting transport phenomena due to restricted motion of fluids within the nano- to microscale voids. Here, we investigate how liquid wetting in highly ordered inverse opals is affected by anisotropy in pore geometry. We compare samples with different degrees of pore asphericity and find different wetting patterns depending on… (More)
A systematic model study on the role(s) of putrescine homologues on silicification is presented and it is proposed that electrostatic forces between additive and silicic acid, and the hydrophobic behaviour of the additives are both important in silicification.
PDMPO (2-(4-pyridyl)-5-((4-(2-dimethylaminoethylaminocarbamoyl)methoxy)phenyl)oxazole), has unique silica specific fluorescence and is used in biology to understand biosilicification. This 'silicaphilic' fluorescence is not well understood nor is the response to local environmental variables like solvent and pH. We investigated PDMPO in a range of… (More)
Silica is the second most abundant biomineral being exceeded in nature only by biogenic CaCO3. Many land plants (such as rice, cereals, cucumber, etc.) deposit silica in significant amounts to reinforce their tissues and as a systematic response to pathogen attack. One of the most ancient species of living vascular plants, Equisetum arvense is also able to… (More)