Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting nature.com. You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Volume 4 Issue 8, August 2009

Numerous attempts have been made to sequence single molecules of DNA with a scanning tunnelling microscope (STM) but there have been problems with preparing samples and reproducing results. Now, Hiroyuki Tanaka and Tomoji Kawai report a method for depositing single DNA molecules on a copper surface and go on to determine the 'electronic fingerprint' for guanine — one of the four bases found in DNA molecules. Their results show that it is possible to sequence individual guanine bases in real long-chain DNA molecules with high-resolution STM imaging and scanning tunnelling spectroscopy. The false-colour STM image on the cover, which measures 67 nm across, shows a DNA molecule running from bottom left to top right.

Cover design by Karen Moore

Letter p518; News & Views p476

Editorial

  • From single-electron physics and DNA-based sorting techniques to efforts to improve the performance of atomic force microscopes, carbon nanotubes are still at the forefront of research in many areas of nanoscience and technology.

    Editorial

    Advertisement

Top of page ⤴

Commentary

  • We propose a proactive approach to the management of occupational health risks in emerging technologies based on six features: qualitative risk assessment; the ability to adapt strategies and refine requirements; an appropriate level of precaution; global applicability; the ability to elicit voluntary cooperation by companies; and stakeholder involvement.

    • Vladimir Murashov
    • John Howard
    Commentary
Top of page ⤴

Thesis

  • Interactions between scientists and artists or designers can be beneficial for both sides and, as Richard Jones reports, offer intriguing glimpses of the future.

    • Richard Jones
    Thesis
Top of page ⤴

Research Highlights

Top of page ⤴

News & Views

  • Single-electron behaviour has been observed in devices that can be made by simply trapping gold nanoparticles between two droplets of liquid metal.

    • Daniel Vanmaekelbergh
    News & Views
  • The scanning tunnelling microscope can image and distinguish individual bases in DNA molecules, thus allowing partial sequencing of the strands.

    • Danny Porath
    News & Views
  • The atomic force microscope has recently been the subject of a series of exciting developments. The latest advance shows that this instrument can measure the charge state of an individual atom.

    • Udo D. Schwarz
    News & Views
  • The synchronization of four magnetic vortices without the use of a magnetic field has brought nanoscale microwave oscillators one step closer to fruition.

    • Andrei Slavin
    News & Views
  • Charge carriers have been confined by exploiting the small difference between the bandgap energies of the two naturally occurring stable isotopes of carbon.

    • Kohei Itoh
    News & Views
Top of page ⤴

Review Article

  • Carbon nanotubes have demonstrated considerable potential as tips for atomic force microscopy (AFM), but they are still not widely used. This article reviews the history and applications of nanotube–based AFM tips, and reports on research to improve their performance.

    • Neil R. Wilson
    • Julie V. Macpherson
    Review Article
Top of page ⤴

Letter

Top of page ⤴

Article

Top of page ⤴
Find nanotechnology articles, nanomaterial data and patents all in one place. Visit Nano by Nature Research

Search

Quick links