DNA-functionalized hydrogels for confined membrane-free in vitro transcription/translation†
We microfluidically fabricate bio-orthogonal DNA-functionalized porous hydrogels from hyaluronic acid that are employed in in vitro transcription/translation (IVTT) of a green fluorescent protein. By co-encapsulating individual hydrogel particles and the IVTT machinery in water-in-oil microdroplets, we study protein expression in a defined reaction volume. Our approach enables precise control over protein expression rates by gene dosage. We show that gene transcription and translation are confined to the membrane-free hydrogel matrix, which contributes to the design of membrane-free protocells.
- This article is part of the themed collection: 2014 Lab on a Chip Emerging Investigators