Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > New Nanopore Technique Facilitates Faster, Cheaper Genome Analyses

Schematic of a solid state nanopore used for genome analyses (not to scale). The electrostatic potential near an approximately five nanometer-wide, solid-state nanopore attracts negatively-charged, double-stranded DNA molecules into the pore, which electronically detects the molecules as they traverse the pore. (Photo courtesy of Nature Nanotechnology.)
Schematic of a solid state nanopore used for genome analyses (not to scale). The electrostatic potential near an approximately five nanometer-wide, solid-state nanopore attracts negatively-charged, double-stranded DNA molecules into the pore, which electronically detects the molecules as they traverse the pore. (Photo courtesy of Nature Nanotechnology.)

Abstract:
Ultra-fast, low-cost genomic sequencing and profiling may some day accelerate the pace of biological discovery and enable clinicians to quickly and precisely diagnose patients' susceptibility to disease and tolerance of selected drugs. But this scenario may not be realized until engineers find a way to considerably increase the sensitivity of sensors used to detect the DNA molecules that define the human genome.

New Nanopore Technique Facilitates Faster, Cheaper Genome Analyses

Boston, MA | Posted on December 21st, 2009

It's a feat that could be achieved by reducing the number of target DNA molecule copies needed to obtain an accurate read. And that presents a formidable challenge: to produce sufficient copies to decipher the genome using current technology, most scientists still rely on time-consuming, expensive, and error-prone DNA replication tools such as the polymerase chain reaction (PCR).

Now researchers have devised a method that advances the prospects for efficiently analyzing DNA samples without amplification. In a study published in the Dec. 20 online edition of Nature Nanotechnology, Associate Professor Amit Meller (BME, Physics), BME postdoctoral fellow Meni Wanunu, BU physics student Will Morrison and collaborators at New York University and Bar-Ilan University demonstrated a method to tune solid-state nanopores — tiny, nearly cylindrical, silicon nitride sensors that electronically detect DNA molecules as they pass through the pore — to require far fewer DNA molecules than ever before.

"This study shows that using our method, we can detect a much smaller amount of DNA than previously published," said Meller. "When people will start to implement genome sequencing or profiling using nanopores, they could use our nanopore capture approach to greatly reduce the number of copies used in those measurements."

Nanopore capture consists of two distinct steps: the arrival of a sample molecule to the pore mouth, and the threading of the end of that molecule into the pore. To significantly increase the rate at which nanopores capture incoming, two nanometer-wide DNA molecules, Meller and his colleagues used salt gradients to alter the electric field in the pore's vicinity. This achieved a funneling effect that directed charged DNA molecules toward the mouth of the pore and boosted the molecules' arrival and threading rates.

By upping the capture rate by a few orders of magnitude and decreasing the volume of the sample receiving chamber, the researchers reduced the number of DNA molecule copies required for nanopore-based detection by a factor of 10,000 — from about one billion sample molecules to 100,000. They also demonstrated that longer DNA molecules (containing tens of thousands of nucleotide base pairs) increased the capture rate even further.

"PCR and other DNA replication technologies limit DNA molecule length," said Meller. "Because our method avoids amplification, it not only reduces the cost, time and error rate of DNA replication techniques, but also enables the analysis of very long strands of DNA."

Funded by the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation, the research team set out to achieve a better understanding of the physical forces that govern the DNA capture process. They arrived at their findings by using high-end transmission electron microscopes (TEM) to fabricate hundreds of nanopores with atomic-scale precision, and testing differently configured salt gradients near the pores.

"We had to perform extensive studies with these nearly atomic-scale pores in order to reveal how the electrostatic potential, which extends at least hundreds of nanometers away from the pore, focuses DNA into and through the pore," said Meller.

To conduct further investigations of unamplified genomes, Meller is now exploring other technologies, including optical detection and force measurements, for reading single DNA molecules as they pass through nanopores.

####

About Boston University
Boston University is one of the leading private research and teaching institutions in the world today, with two primary campuses in the heart of Boston and programs around the world.

For more information, please click here

Copyright © Boston 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

News and information

CubeSat Structures Competition Opens Space Design to Students of the World December 16th, 2017

Record high photoconductivity for new metal-organic framework material December 15th, 2017

Error-free into the quantum computer age December 15th, 2017

Leti Will Demonstrate First 3D Anti-Crash Solution for Embedding in Drones: Fitted on a Mass-Market Microcontroller, 360Fusion Software Technology Detects any Dynamic Obstacle and Helps Guide Drones Away from Collisions December 15th, 2017

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Synthetic protein packages its own genetic material and evolves computationally designed protein assemblies are advancing research in synthetic life and in targeted drug delivery December 15th, 2017

Sandia researchers make solid ground toward better lithium-ion battery interfaces: Reducing the traffic jam in batteries December 13th, 2017

Perking up and crimping the 'bristles' of polyelectrolyte brushes December 13th, 2017

Columbia engineers create artificial graphene in a nanofabricated semiconductor structure: Researchers are the first to observe the electronic structure of graphene in an engineered semiconductor; finding could lead to progress in advanced optoelectronics and data processing December 13th, 2017

Possible Futures

CubeSat Structures Competition Opens Space Design to Students of the World December 16th, 2017

Record high photoconductivity for new metal-organic framework material December 15th, 2017

Error-free into the quantum computer age December 15th, 2017

Leti Will Demonstrate First 3D Anti-Crash Solution for Embedding in Drones: Fitted on a Mass-Market Microcontroller, 360Fusion Software Technology Detects any Dynamic Obstacle and Helps Guide Drones Away from Collisions December 15th, 2017

Nanomedicine

Synthetic protein packages its own genetic material and evolves computationally designed protein assemblies are advancing research in synthetic life and in targeted drug delivery December 15th, 2017

Perking up and crimping the 'bristles' of polyelectrolyte brushes December 13th, 2017

Leti to Demo Wristband with Embedded Sensors to Diagnose Sleep Apnea: APNEAband, Which Will Be Demonstrated at CES 2018, Also Monitors Mountain Sickness, Dehydration, Dialysis Treatment Response and Epileptic Seizures December 12th, 2017

Untangling DNA: Researchers filter the entropy out of nanopore measurements December 8th, 2017

Sensors

Record high photoconductivity for new metal-organic framework material December 15th, 2017

Leti Will Demonstrate First 3D Anti-Crash Solution for Embedding in Drones: Fitted on a Mass-Market Microcontroller, 360Fusion Software Technology Detects any Dynamic Obstacle and Helps Guide Drones Away from Collisions December 15th, 2017

Leti to Demo Wristband with Embedded Sensors to Diagnose Sleep Apnea: APNEAband, Which Will Be Demonstrated at CES 2018, Also Monitors Mountain Sickness, Dehydration, Dialysis Treatment Response and Epileptic Seizures December 12th, 2017

Leti Develops World’s First Micro-Coolers for CERN Particle Detectors: Leti Design, Fabrication and Packaging Expertise Extends to Very Large Scientific Instruments December 11th, 2017

Announcements

CubeSat Structures Competition Opens Space Design to Students of the World December 16th, 2017

Record high photoconductivity for new metal-organic framework material December 15th, 2017

Error-free into the quantum computer age December 15th, 2017

Leti Will Demonstrate First 3D Anti-Crash Solution for Embedding in Drones: Fitted on a Mass-Market Microcontroller, 360Fusion Software Technology Detects any Dynamic Obstacle and Helps Guide Drones Away from Collisions December 15th, 2017

Tools

Perking up and crimping the 'bristles' of polyelectrolyte brushes December 13th, 2017

Untangling DNA: Researchers filter the entropy out of nanopore measurements December 8th, 2017

JPK Instruments announce partnership with Swiss company, Cytosurge AG. The partnership makes Cytosurge’s FluidFM® technology available on the JPK NanoWizard® AFM platform December 8th, 2017

Researchers advance technique to detect ovarian cancer: Rice, MD Anderson use fluorescent carbon nanotube probes to achieve first in vivo success November 30th, 2017

Nanobiotechnology

Synthetic protein packages its own genetic material and evolves computationally designed protein assemblies are advancing research in synthetic life and in targeted drug delivery December 15th, 2017

Perking up and crimping the 'bristles' of polyelectrolyte brushes December 13th, 2017

Arrowhead Presents New Clinical Data Demonstrating a Sustained Host Response in Hepatitis B Patients Following RNAi Therapy — Up to 5.0 log10 reduction in HBsAg observed; data presented at HEP DART 2017 — December 6th, 2017

Going swimmingly: Biotemplates breakthrough paves way for cheaper nanobots: By using bacterial flagella as a template for silica, researchers have demonstrated an easier way to make propulsion systems for nanoscale swimming robots November 30th, 2017

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