DNA topology influences molecular machine lifetime in human serum
DNA nanotechnology holds the potential for enabling new tools for biomedical engineering, including diagnosis, prognosis, and therapeutics. However, applications for DNA devices are thought to be limited by rapid enzymatic degradation in serum and blood. Here, we demonstrate that a key aspect of DNA nanotechnology—programmable molecular shape—plays a substantial role in device lifetimes. These results establish the ability to operate synthetic DNA devices in the presence of endogenous enzymes and challenge the textbook view of near instantaneous degradation.