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Home > News > DNA origami gets into the fold of drug delivery: Using DNA building blocks that can be manipulated into many complex shapes, scientists are hoping to develop 'nanorobots' that could potentially deliver drugs to target cancer cells

May 14th, 2012

DNA origami gets into the fold of drug delivery: Using DNA building blocks that can be manipulated into many complex shapes, scientists are hoping to develop 'nanorobots' that could potentially deliver drugs to target cancer cells

Abstract:
While scientists have long been reading and manipulating DNA, they are now using it as a construction material. By folding the famous "molecules of life" into intricate contortions, they can build sculptures just nanometres in size. "We use DNA the way a carpenter uses wood," says Paul Rothemund from the California Institute of Technology, who invented the technique, and gave it its name: DNA origami. Although still in its infancy, this practice is already providing scientists with custom-made tools for biological research. Eventually, it might even be used to create containers for packaging and releasing medical drugs.

The technique exploits the fact that DNA's four building blocks - known as bases - naturally pair up with one another. Adenine (A) sticks to thymine (T), and cytosine (C) sticks to guanine (G). If you get the letters right, you can create molecules that zip up in very precise ways.

Source:
guardian.co.uk

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