PAPER: Design and synthesis of DNA four-helix bundles

Rangnekar, A.; Gothelf, K. V.; LaBean, T. H.

Nanotechnology 2011, 22, 235601, doi: 10.1088/0957-4484/22/23/235601

Department of Chemistry, Centre for DNA Nanotechnology (CDNA), Aarhus University, Aarhus C, Denmark


The field of DNA nanotechnology has evolved significantly in the past decade. Researchers have succeeded in synthesizing tile-based structures and using them to form periodic lattices in one, two and three dimensions. Origami-based structures have also been used to create nanoscale structures in two and three dimensions. Design and construction of DNA bundles with fixed circumference has added a new dimension to the field. Here we report the design and synthesis of a DNA four-helix bundle. It was found to be extremely rigid and stable. When several such bundles were assembled using appropriate sticky-ends, they formed micrometre-long filaments. However, when creation of two-dimensional sheet-like arrays of the four-helix bundles was attempted, nanoscale rings were observed instead. The exact reason behind the nanoring formation is yet to be ascertained, but it provides an exciting prospect for making programmable circular nanostructures using DNA.

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