# Adsorption of Zein on Surfaces with Controlled Wettability and Thermal Stability of Adsorbed Zein Films

Subramanian, S and Sampath, S (2007) Adsorption of Zein on Surfaces with Controlled Wettability and Thermal Stability of Adsorbed Zein Films. In: Biomacromolecules, 8 (7). pp. 2120-2128.

Adsorption characteristics of zein protein on hydrophobic and hydrophilic surfaces have been investigated to understand the orientation changes associated with the protein structure on a surface. The protein is adsorbed by a self-assembly procedure on a monolayer-modified gold surface. It is observed that zein shows higher affinity toward hydrophilic than hydrophobic surfaces on the basis of the initial adsorption rate followed by quartz crystal microbalance studies. Reflection absorption infrared (RAIR) spectroscopic studies reveal the orientation changes associated with the adsorbed zein films. Upon adsorption, the protein is found to be denatured and the transformation of $\beta$-helix to $\alpha$-sheet form is inferred. This transformation is pronounced when the protein is adsorbed on hydrophobic surfaces as compared to hydrophilic surfaces. Electrochemical techniques (cyclic voltammetry and impedance techniques) are very useful in assessing the permeability of zein film. It is observed that the zein moieties adsorbed on hydrophilic surfaces are highly impermeable in nature and act as a barrier for small molecules. The topographical features of the deposits before and after adsorption are analyzed by atomic force microscopy. The protein adsorbed on hydrophilic surface shows rod- and disclike features that are likely to be the base units for the growth of cylindrical structures of zein. The thermal stability of the adsorbed zein film has been followed by variable-temperature RAIR measurements.