The precise synthesis of materials and devices with tailored complex structures and properties is a requisite for the development of the next generation of products based on nanotechnology. Nowadays, the technology for the generation of this type of devices lacks the precision to determine their properties and is accomplished mostly by ‘trial and error’ experimental approaches. The use of bottom-up approaches that rely on highly specific biomolecular interactions of small and simple components is an attractive approach for the templating of nanoscale elements. In nature, protein assemblies define complex structures and functions. Engineering novel bio-inspired assemblies by exploiting the same rules and interactions that encode the natural diversity is an emerging field that opens the door to create nanostructures with numerous potential applications in synthetic biology and nanotechnology. Self-assembly of biological molecules into defined functional structures has a tremendous potential in nano-patterning and the design of novel materials and functional devices. Molecular self-assembly is a process by which complex 3D structures with specified functions are constructed from simple molecular building blocks. Here we discuss the basis of biomolecular templating, the great potential of repeat proteins as building blocks for biomolecular templating and nano-patterning. In particular, we focus on the designed consensus tetratricopeptide repeats (CTPRs), the control on the assembly of these proteins into higher order structures and their potential as building blocks in order to generate functional nanostructures and materials.

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