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Volume 143, 2009
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DNA self-assembly: from 2D to 3D

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This paper describes our recent efforts on the self-assembly of three-dimensional (3D) DNA nanostructures from DNA star motifs (tiles). DNA star motifs are a family of DNA nanostructures with 3, 4, 5, or 6 branches; they are named as 3-, 4-, 5-, 6-point-star motifs, respectively. Such motifs are programmed to further assemble into nanocages (regular polyhedra or irregular nanocapsules) with diameters ranging from 20 nm to 2 µm. Among them, DNA nanocages derived from 3-point-star motif consists of a group of regular polyhedra: tetrahedra, hexahedra (or cubes), dodecahedra and buckyballs (containing 4, 8, 20, and 60 units of the 3-point-star motif, respectively). An icosahedron consists of twelve 5-point-star motifs and is similar to the shapes of spherical viruses. 6-point-star motifs can not assemble into regular polyhedra; instead, some sphere-like or irregular cages with diameters about 1–2 μm will form. Similar large cages can also assemble from the 5-point-star motif when the DNA concentrations are higher than those for assembling regular icosahedra. In our study, we have identified several important factors for assembly of well-defined 3D nanostructures, including the concentration, the flexibility, and the arm length of the DNA tiles and the association strength between the DNA tiles.

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Publication details

The article was received on 16 Mar 2009, accepted on 06 Apr 2009 and first published on 27 Jul 2009

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/B905313C
Citation: Faraday Discuss., 2009,143, 221-233
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    DNA self-assembly: from 2D to 3D

    C. Zhang, Y. He, M. Su, S. H. Ko, T. Ye, Y. Leng, X. Sun, A. E. Ribbe, W. Jiang and C. Mao, Faraday Discuss., 2009, 143, 221
    DOI: 10.1039/B905313C

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