Photoregulation between small DNAs and reversible photochromic molecules
Oligonucleotides are widely used biological materials in the fields of biomedicine, nanotechnology, and materials science. Due to the demands for the photoregulation of DNA activities, scientists are placing more and more research interest in the interactions between reversible photochromic molecules and DNAs. Photochromic molecules can work as switches for regulating the DNAs’ behavior under light irradiation; meanwhile, DNAs also exert influence over the photochromic molecules. The photochromic molecules can be attached to DNAs either by covalent bonds or by noncovalent forces, which results in different regulative functions. Azobenzenes, spiropyrans, diarylethenes, and stilbene-like compounds are important photochromic molecules working as photoswitches. By summarizing their interactions with oligonucleotides, this review intends to facilitate the relevant research on oligonucleotides/photochromic molecules in the biological and medicinal fields and in materials science.