DNA nanotechnology for nucleic acid analysis: multifunctional molecular DNA machine for RNA detection†
The Nobel prize in chemistry in 2016 was awarded for ‘the design and synthesis of molecular machines’. Here we designed and assembled a molecular machine for the detection of specific RNA molecules. An association of several DNA strands, named multifunctional DNA machine for RNA analysis (MDMR1), was designed to (i) unwind RNA with the help of RNA-binding arms, (ii) selectively recognize a targeted RNA fragment, (iii) attract a signal-producing substrate and (iv) amplify the fluorescent signal by catalysis. MDMR1 enabled detection of 16S rRNA at concentrations ∼24 times lower than that by a traditional deoxyribozyme probe.