Issue 12, 2015

Target-fueled DNA walker for highly selective miRNA detection


Artificial DNA motifs as architectural scaffolds have been widely used to assemble a variety of nanoscale devices. Synthetic DNA nanostructures have accomplished mechanical switching in response to external stimuli, suggesting the promise of constructing a walking device that is being used in the field of biosensors. Here, we design a novel miRNA-responsive DNA walker biosensor based on strand displacement cascades and an enzymatic recycling cleavage strategy. By using miRNA as a driving force, the DNA walkers can be activated to move along the track and generate specific signals for let-7a with a high signal-to-noise ratio. This biosensor exhibits excellent analytical performance toward the sensing of let-7a with great specificity for resolving one nucleotide variation and a detection limit of 58 fM. Such an ultraselective sensor shows that DNA nanostructures have great potential in providing platforms for applications in the fields of biosensing, clinical diagnostics and environmental sample analysis.

Graphical abstract: Target-fueled DNA walker for highly selective miRNA detection

Supplementary files

Article information

Article type
Edge Article
29 Jul 2015
10 Sep 2015
First published
10 Sep 2015
This article is Open Access

All publication charges for this article have been paid for by the Royal Society of Chemistry
Creative Commons BY license

Chem. Sci., 2015,6, 6777-6782

Target-fueled DNA walker for highly selective miRNA detection

L. Wang, R. Deng and J. Li, Chem. Sci., 2015, 6, 6777 DOI: 10.1039/C5SC02784E

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