The present invention provides a mixture of self-assembling peptide-amphiphiles with complementary charges whose design and function is patterned after proteins having biological functions. The oppositely charged peptide amphiphiles may be self-assembled by combining them in a charge equivalent ratio. Variations of structural peptide sequences in the oppositely charged peptide-amphiphiles enable the assembled nanofibers to exhibit two or more biologically relevant signals.
 The U.S. Government may have certain rights to this invention pursuant to Grant from the: (i) U.S. Department of Energy, Grant No. DE-FG02-00ER45810, (ii) Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Grant No. F49620-00-1-0283, and (iii) National Science Foundation, Grant No. DMR-9996253 to Northwestern University.