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Nanotechnology innovation may revolutionize gene detection in a single cell
Date:1/10/2008

Scientists at Arizona State Universitys Biodesign Institute have developed the worlds first gene detection platform made up entirely from self-assembled DNA nanostructures. The results, appearing in the January 11 issue of the journal Science, could have broad implications for gene chip technology and may also revolutionize the way in which gene expression is analyzed in a single cell.

We are starting with the most well-known structure in biology, DNA, and applying it as a nano-scale building material, said Hao Yan, a member of the institutes Center for Single Molecule Biophysics and an assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry in the College of Liberal and Sciences.

Yan is a researcher in the fast-moving field known as structural DNA nanotechnology that assembles the molecule of life into a variety of nanostructures with a broad range of applications from human health to nanoelectronics.

Yan led an interdisciplinary ASU team to develop a way to use structural DNA nanotechnology to target the chemical messengers of genes, called RNA.

The team included: lead author and chemistry and biochemistry graduate student Yonggang Ke; assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry Yan Liu; Center for Single Molecule Biophysics director and physics professor Stuart Lindsay; and associate professor in the School of Life Sciences, Yung Chang.

"This is one of the first practical applications of a powerful technology, that, till now, has mainly been the subject of research demonstrations, said Lindsay. The field of structural DNA nanotechnology has recently seen much exciting progress from constructing geometrical and topological nanostructures through tile based DNA self-assembly initially demonstrated by Ned Seeman, Erik Winfree and colleagues, said Yan.

A recent breakthrough of making spatially addressable DNA nanoarrays came from Paul Rothemunds work on scaffolded DNA origami, a method in which a lon
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Contact: Joe Caspermeyer
joseph.caspermeyer@asu.edu
480-727-0369
Arizona State University
Source:Eurekalert  

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