DNA is more than just a carrier for our genetic information; DNA is also an outstanding nanoscale building material, as researchers led by Ned Seeman discovered thirty years ago.
Seeman and his colleagues at the New York University (USA) have now used cross-shaped DNA tiles to produce an amazingly large grid structure that resembles woven fabric. As the researchers report in the journal Angewandte Chemie, these two-dimensional crystals attain dimensions of about 2×3 micrometers.
The specific pairing of complementary bases makes DNA an ideal nanoscale building component. It is possible to incorporate particular base sequences that specifically bind to their counterparts. These are called “sticky ends”, and can be used to assemble tailored structures. Many nanostructures and nanomachines have previously been made from DNA. This technology experienced an upsurge a few years ago because of a new twist: the DNA origami technique developed by Paul Rothemund. As in origami, the Japanese art of paper folding, a long single strand of DNA is folded into a desired three-dimensional shape through short synthetic DNA oligonucleotides.
Seeman and his co-workers have also made use of this technique. They used this origami method to fold the DNA into the shapes they needed: cross-shaped tiles. The crosses consist of two mutually orthogonal overlapping strips, like two plasters stuck on top of each other to make a cross. On the four sides of the cross there are several sticky ends; the sticky ends opposite each other are identical. The researchers used two different sets of origami crosses with different sticky ends. These ends are designed so that the crosses bind together in an alternating pattern through a self-organization process—such that the lower strip of one cross is always bound to the upper strip of its neighbor. This results in a two-dimensional structure that has a lattice-like woven appearance when viewed through an electron microscope. The alternating construction of upward and downward curved crosses is necessary to produce a planar surface. Randomly assembled crosses often lead to tubular structures.
“Our new approach could smooth the way for the industrial production of nanostructures through molecular self-organization processes,” hopes Seeman.
Author: Nadrian C. Seeman, New York University (USA), http://chemistry.fas.nyu.edu/object/nadriancseeman.html
Title: Crystalline Two-Dimensional DNA Origami Arrays
Angewandte Chemie International Edition, Permalink to the article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/anie.201005911
Nadrian C. Seeman | Angewandte Chemie
At last, butterflies get a bigger, better evolutionary tree
16.02.2018 | Florida Museum of Natural History
New treatment strategies for chronic kidney disease from the animal kingdom
16.02.2018 | Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien
Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale
Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...
For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.
But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...
Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.
The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...
Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters
Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...
Let’s say the armrest is broken in your vintage car. As things stand, you would need a lot of luck and persistence to find the right spare part. But in the world of Industrie 4.0 and production with batch sizes of one, you can simply scan the armrest and print it out. This is made possible by the first ever 3D scanner capable of working autonomously and in real time. The autonomous scanning system will be on display at the Hannover Messe Preview on February 6 and at the Hannover Messe proper from April 23 to 27, 2018 (Hall 6, Booth A30).
Part of the charm of vintage cars is that they stopped making them long ago, so it is special when you do see one out on the roads. If something breaks or...
15.02.2018 | Event News
13.02.2018 | Event News
12.02.2018 | Event News
16.02.2018 | Information Technology
16.02.2018 | Health and Medicine
16.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy