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Issue 46, 2015
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Unraveling the complexity of the interactions of DNA nucleotides with gold by single molecule force spectroscopy

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Abstract

Addressing the effect of different environmental factors on the adsorption of DNA to solid supports is critical for the development of robust miniaturized devices for applications ranging from biosensors to next generation molecular technology. Most of the time, thiol-based chemistry is used to anchor DNA on gold – a substrate commonly used in nanotechnology – and little is known about the direct interaction between DNA and gold. So far there have been no systematic studies on the direct adsorption behavior of the deoxyribonucleotides (i.e., a nitrogenous base, a deoxyribose sugar, and a phosphate group) and on the factors that govern the DNA–gold bond strength. Here, using single molecule force spectroscopy, we investigated the interaction of the four individual nucleotides, adenine, guanine, cytosine, and thymine, with gold. Experiments were performed in three salinity conditions and two surface dwell times to reveal the factors that influence nucleotide–Au bond strength. Force data show that, at physiological ionic strength, adenine–Au interactions are stronger, asymmetrical and independent of surface dwell time as compared to cytosine–Au and guanine–Au interactions. We suggest that in these conditions only adenine is able to chemisorb on gold. A decrease of the ionic strength significantly increases the bond strength for all nucleotides. We show that moderate ionic strength along with longer surface dwell period suggest weak chemisorption also for cytosine and guanine.

Graphical abstract: Unraveling the complexity of the interactions of DNA nucleotides with gold by single molecule force spectroscopy

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Publication details

The article was received on 21 Aug 2015, accepted on 27 Oct 2015 and first published on 29 Oct 2015


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C5NR05695K
Author version available: Download Author version (PDF)
Citation: Nanoscale, 2015,7, 19528-19533
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    Unraveling the complexity of the interactions of DNA nucleotides with gold by single molecule force spectroscopy

    F. Bano, D. Sluysmans, A. Wislez and A. Duwez, Nanoscale, 2015, 7, 19528
    DOI: 10.1039/C5NR05695K

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