Nanotechnology Now





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Nano-scale structures made from DNA: study

Abstract:
Best known as the blueprint for life, DNA is also a marvel of architecture that can be used to build 3-D structures measured in billionths of a metre, according to a study released Wednesday.

Nano-scale structures made from DNA: study

PARIS, France | Posted on March 12th, 2008

A team of scientists in the United States has shown in experiments how to construct complex, spherical objects with tiny strings of DNA that assemble by themselves.

DNA nanotechnology uses the building blocks of living organisms not as a repository for biological data, but as a structural material instead.

These molecular-scale biomaterials hold tremendous promise in fields ranging from robotics to electronics to computation, scientists say.

One of the ultimate goals is the self-assembling biochips for nano-computers, according to New York University chemist Nadrian Seeman, a leading expert on on DNA-based technology.

Whether synthetic or natural, DNA strands often display properties that cannot be duplicated in conventional organic or inorganic chemistry.

Such biomaterials have the added advantage of being a renewable resource and, by definition, biodegradable.

The DNA double helix structure consists of two intertwined spirals of sugar and phosphate molecules linked by pairs of nucleotides, the basic building blocks of all life.

In nature, the double helix is about two nanometres wide, and varies in length depending on the organism whose genetic codes it contains. In humans, the DNA ladder consists of some three billion "rungs," or base pairs, that would stretch out nearly a meter (yard) in length if unfolded.

Some two-dimensional DNA nanostructures have already been made by coaxing DNA molecules to interact and lock together in such a way as to produce a desired pattern.

But larger and three-dimensional forms have been harder to make using existing methods because of the need to manipulate hundreds of unique DNA strands.

A team of researchers led by Chengde Mao of Perdue University in Illinois overcame this problem by programming the DNA to first fold into a basic, "pre-fab" structural unit shaped like a three-pointed star.

This made it easier for these uniform units to coalesce into five- or 12-sided geometric forms, or even "buckyballs", molecules with 32 sides composed of 20 hexagons and 12 pentagons.

"We expect that our assembly strategy can be adapted to allow the fabrication of a range of relatively complex three-dimensional structures," the researchers concluded.

####

Copyright © New York University

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

Chip Technology

Basel physicists develop efficient method of signal transmission from nanocomponents May 23rd, 2015

Nanometrics Announces Live Webcast of Upcoming Investor and Analyst Day May 20th, 2015

Sandia researchers first to measure thermoelectric behavior by 'Tinkertoy' materials May 20th, 2015

Defects can 'Hulk-up' materials: Berkeley lab study shows properly managed damage can boost material thermoelectric performances May 20th, 2015

Discoveries

Nanostructures Increase Corrosion Resistance in Metallic Body Implants May 24th, 2015

Iranian Scientists Use Magnetic Field to Transfer Anticancer Drug to Tumor Tissue May 24th, 2015

Basel physicists develop efficient method of signal transmission from nanocomponents May 23rd, 2015

This Slinky lookalike 'hyperlens' helps us see tiny objects: The photonics advancement could improve early cancer detection, nanoelectronics manufacturing and scientists' ability to observe single molecules May 23rd, 2015

Announcements

Nanostructures Increase Corrosion Resistance in Metallic Body Implants May 24th, 2015

Iranian Scientists Use Magnetic Field to Transfer Anticancer Drug to Tumor Tissue May 24th, 2015

Basel physicists develop efficient method of signal transmission from nanocomponents May 23rd, 2015

This Slinky lookalike 'hyperlens' helps us see tiny objects: The photonics advancement could improve early cancer detection, nanoelectronics manufacturing and scientists' ability to observe single molecules May 23rd, 2015

Nanobiotechnology

This Slinky lookalike 'hyperlens' helps us see tiny objects: The photonics advancement could improve early cancer detection, nanoelectronics manufacturing and scientists' ability to observe single molecules May 23rd, 2015

Supercomputer unlocks secrets of plant cells to pave the way for more resilient crops: IBM partners with University of Melbourne and UQ May 21st, 2015

Researchers develop new way to manufacture nanofibers May 21st, 2015

Nature inspires first artificial molecular pump: Simple design mimics pumping mechanism of life-sustaining proteins found in living cells May 19th, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More










ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project