Letter abstract


Nature Nanotechnology 4, 430 - 436 (2009)
Published online: 3 May 2009 | doi:10.1038/nnano.2009.93

Subject Categories: Nanobiotechnology | Nanomaterials

Multifunctional nanoarchitectures from DNA-based ABC monomers

Jong B. Lee1, Young H. Roh1, Soong Ho Um1,3, Hisakage Funabashi1, Wenlong Cheng1, Judy J. Cha2, Pichamon Kiatwuthinon1, David A. Muller2 & Dan Luo1


The ability to attach different functional moieties to a molecular building block1, 2 could lead to applications in nanoelectronics3, nanophotonics4, intelligent sensing5 and drug delivery6, 7. The building unit needs to be both multivalent and anisotropic, and although many anisotropic building blocks have been created1, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, these have not been universally applicable. Recently, DNA has been used to generate various nanostructures13, 14, 15, 16, 17 or hybrid systems18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, and as a generic building block for various applications26, 27, 28, 29, 30. Here, we report the creation of anisotropic, branched and crosslinkable building blocks (ABC monomers) from which multifunctional nanoarchitectures have been assembled. In particular, we demonstrate a target-driven polymerization process in which polymers are generated only in the presence of a specific DNA molecule, leading to highly sensitive pathogen detection. Using this monomer system, we have also designed a biocompatible nanovector that delivers both drugs and tracers simultaneously. Our approach provides a general yet versatile route towards the creation of a range of multifunctional nanoarchitectures.

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  1. Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14850, USA
  2. Department of Applied and Engineering Physics, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14850, USA
  3. Present address: Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Department of Biological Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 77 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA

Correspondence to: Dan Luo1 e-mail: dan.luo@cornell.edu



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