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European boost for DNA nanotechnology
Date:11/6/2012

The use of DNA strands as nano building materials is on the way to creating revolutionary new opportunities in the development of medicine, optics and electronics.

The idea of using artificial DNA strands as tiny self-assembly kits was originally developed by American scientists in the 1990s, and the continued development has in great parts taken place in the USA.

However, during the last decade European researchers have contributed significantly to the progress of this rapidly evolving field, and have built up strong expertise at the European universities to be able to set up a joint graduate school in this subject, enhancing European research and development in DNA nanotechnology. The school will mainly cover fundamental research, but it is also set up to promote innovations and the development of commercial applications.

EScoDNA

The new graduate school is called the European School of DNA Nanotechnology (EScoDNA), and it has been awarded approximately EUR 4 million as an Initial Training Network (ITN) under the European Commission's Marie Curie Actions research fellowship programme. EScoDNA will foster the development of a new generation of scientists with the skills required to meet futures challenges in bionanotechnology, from fundamental science to novel applications.

"We have an excellent pool of talent at the undergraduate level: if we provide excellent conditions to study DNA nanotechnology we will be able to educate a pool of highly competent European-based PhDs and we will gain access to some of the best young researchers in the world," says Professor Gothelf at Aarhus University, Denmark, who is the coordinator of the EScoDNA programme.

By addressing the present shortage of experienced researchers in this field, EScoDNA will also promote the foundation of new bionanotechnology start-up companies and the strong links between industrial partners and research labs within this training network will help
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Contact: Kurt Gothelf
EScoDNA@inano.au.dk
45-60-20-27-25
Aarhus University
Source:Eurekalert  

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