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April 2016

Revealing the Fluctuations of Flexible DNA in 3D


Scientific Achievement

An international team of staff and users working at the Molecular Foundry has captured the first high-resolution 3D images from individual double-helix DNA segments attached at either end to gold nanoparticles

Significance and Impact

This unique imaging capability should lead to better understanding of disease-relevant proteins and the assembly process that forms DNA. It could also aid in the use of DNA segments as biomarkers, drug-delivery systems, computer memory and electronic devices.

Research Details


L. Zhang, D. Lei, J. M. Smith, M. Zhang, H. Tong, X. Zhang, Z. Lu, J. Liu, A. P. Alivisatos & G. Ren. Nat Commun. 2016 7:11083.