Book of Abstracts: Albany 2011

category image Albany 2011
Conversation 17
June 14-18 2011
©Adenine Press (2010)

Biosensor design using DNA tile lattices

Biosensors are of great scientific importance in many fields because of their ability to detect a physiological change or presence of various chemical or biological materials. DNA has become known as an extremely useful building material in nanotechnology, especially in biosensors (1, 2). DNA has the ability to stabilize structure while allowing enough flexibility to achieve the desired shapes (4). Base pairing interactions between designed DNA strands are used to construct tiles, from which lattice structures are assembled (Fig 1). These lattices are useful for diverse molecular scale nanofabrication tasks because of their high thermal stability and multiple attachment sites within and between tiles (3). These lattice structures consist of a central loop, four shell strands, and four arms, totaling from nine strands of DNA (2). The central loop contains 12 unpaired thymine bases. One goal is to adhere a single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) to the available thymine bases in the central loop, creating a “crown” on top of the lattices. The ssDNA strand will ultimately be designed to contain a biomolecule that will serve as a detector in a biosensor. Experiments were performed with a fluorescein labeled poly-adenosine ssDNA binding to the lattice and was detected by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis in combination with a fluorescence imager. Circular dichroism was also used to detect secondary structures of the interaction. Once preliminary experiments are completed successfully, other biomolecules will be attached to the ssDNA to create a tile lattice that will have the ability to function as a biosensor.

Figure 1: (a) DNA strand structure of tiles (b) schematic drawing of tiles and lattices (c) AFM images of tiles and lattices. (Adapted from 2)

  1. T.H. LaBean and H. Li. Nanotoday 2, 26-35 (2007).
  2. S.H. Park, G. Finkelstein, and T.H. LaBean.J. Am. Chem. Soc. 130, 40-41 (2007).
  3. K.V. Gothelf and T.H. LaBean. Org. Biomol. Chem. 3, 4023-4037 (2005).
  4. T.H. LaBean. Nature 459, 331-332 (2009).

Lauren Hakker1
Kimberly A. Harris2,3
Thom H. LaBean4
Paul F. Agris2

1Department of Chemistry, University at Albany-SUNY, Albany, NY, USA 12222
2The RNA Institute, Department of Biological Sciences, University at Albany -SUNY, Albany, NY, USA 12222
3Department of Molecular & Structural Biochemistry, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC, USA 27695
4 Department of Computer Science, Chemistry and Biomedical Engineering, Duke University, Durham, NC, USA 27708