Strand displacement in DNA-based materials systems
Hybridization activity between single-stranded DNA has been well-studied for decades and employed in numerous schemes ranging from nucleic acid detection to oligonucleotide-linked nanostructures. The related, but distinct activity involving strand exchange in duplexes, however, has received less attention. The recent emergence of DNA-based technologies in which strand exchange or displacement events play key functional roles warrants a deeper understanding of how these secondary hybridization events can uniquely enable sequence recognition-based reaction cascades and reversible or reconfigurable assembly schemes in materials systems. The following review discusses the development and implementation of DNA strand exchange events for a range of nanoscale and mesoscale structures in responsive materials.