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Structural DNA Nanotechnology: State of the Art and Future Perspective

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      Abstract

      Over the past three decades DNA has emerged as an exceptional molecular building block for nanoconstruction due to its predictable conformation and programmable intra- and intermolecular Watson–Crick base-pairing interactions. A variety of convenient design rules and reliable assembly methods have been developed to engineer DNA nanostructures of increasing complexity. The ability to create designer DNA architectures with accurate spatial control has allowed researchers to explore novel applications in many directions, such as directed material assembly, structural biology, biocatalysis, DNA computing, nanorobotics, disease diagnosis, and drug delivery. This Perspective discusses the state of the art in the field of structural DNA nanotechnology and presents some of the challenges and opportunities that exist in DNA-based molecular design and programming.

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      In recent work with large high symmetry viruses, single particle electron cryomicroscopy (cryoEM) has reached the milestone of determining near atomic resolution structures by allowing direct fitting of atomic models into experimental density maps. However, achieving this goal with smaller particles of lower symmetry remains extraordinarily challenging. Using a newly developed single electron counting detector, we confirm that electron beam induced motion significantly degrades resolution and, importantly, show how the combination of rapid readout and nearly noiseless electron counting allow image blurring to be corrected to subpixel accuracy. Thus, intrinsic image information can be restored to high resolution (Thon rings visible to ~3 Å). Using this approach we determined a 3.3 Å resolution structure of a ~700 kDa protein with D7 symmetry showing clear side chain density. Our method greatly enhances image quality and data acquisition efficiency - key bottlenecks in applying near atomic resolution cryoEM to a broad range of protein samples.
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        Simple analytical expression for the peak-frequency shifts of plasmonic resonances for sensing

        We derive a closed-form expression that accurately predicts the peak frequency-shift and broadening induced by tiny perturbations of plasmonic nanoresonators without critically relying on repeated electrodynamic simulations of the spectral response of nanoresonator for various locations, sizes or shapes of the perturbing objects. The force of the present approach, in comparison with other approaches of the same kind, is that the derivation is supported by a mathematical formalism based on a rigorous normalization of the resonance modes of nanoresonators consisting of lossy and dispersive materials. Accordingly, accurate predictions are obtained for a large range of nanoparticle shapes and sizes, used in various plasmonic nanosensors, even beyond the quasistatic limit. The expression gives quantitative insight, and combined with an open-source code, provides accurate and fast predictions that are ideally suited for preliminary designs or for interpretation of experimental data. It is also valid for photonic resonators with large mode volumes.
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          The polymerization dynamics of microtubules are central to their biological functions. Polymerization dynamics allow microtubules to adopt spatial arrangements that can change rapidly in response to cellular needs and, in some cases, to perform mechanical work. Microtubules utilize the energy of GTP hydrolysis to fuel a unique polymerization mechanism termed dynamic instability. In this review, we first describe progress toward understanding the mechanism of dynamic instability of pure tubulin and then discuss the function and regulation of microtubule dynamic instability in living cells.
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            Author and article information

            Affiliations
            Center for Molecular Design and Biomimicry, Biodesign Institute, and Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Arizona State University , Tempe, Arizona 85287, United States
            Author notes
            Journal
            J Am Chem Soc
            J. Am. Chem. Soc
            ja
            jacsat
            Journal of the American Chemical Society
            American Chemical Society
            0002-7863
            1520-5126
            16 July 2015
            16 July 2014
            13 August 2014
            : 136
            : 32
            : 11198-11211
            25029570 4140475 10.1021/ja505101a
            Copyright © 2014 American Chemical Society

            Terms of Use

            Funding
            National Institutes of Health, United States
            Categories
            Perspective
            Custom metadata
            ja505101a
            ja-2014-05101a

            Chemistry

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