Two-Dimensional Infrared Spectroscopy Reveals Molecular Self-Assembly on the Surface of Silver Nanoparticles

Anup Ghosh, Amit K. Prasad, Lev Chuntonov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The conformation of molecules, peptides, and proteins, self-assembled into structured monolayers on the surface of metal nanoparticles (NPs), can strongly affect their properties and use in chemical or nanobiomedical applications. Elucidating molecular conformations on the NP surface is highly challenging, and the microscopic details mostly remain elusive. Using polarization-selective third-order two-dimensional ultrafast infrared spectroscopy, we revealed the highly ordered intermolecular structure of γ-tripeptide glutathione on the surface of silver NPs in aqueous solution. Glutathione is an antioxidant thiol abundant in living cells; it is extensively used in NP chemistry and related research. We identified conditions where the interaction of glutathione with the NP surface facilitates formation of a β-sheet-like structure enclosing the NPs. A spectroscopic signature associated with the assembly of β-sheets into an amyloid fibril-like structure was also observed. Remarkably, the interaction with the metal surface promotes formation of a fibril-like structure by a small peptide involving only two amino acids.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2481-2486
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry Letters
Issue number10
StatePublished - 16 May 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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