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Archive for the 'Research' Category

Preserving protein function in DNA-protein nanostructures

Posted by Jim Lewis on June 1st, 2015

Linking proteins to DNA scaffolds to produce complex functional nanostructures can require chemistry that damages protein function. A new systematic approach avoids exposing proteins to damaging conditions.

Single molecule pump concentrates small molecules

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 26th, 2015

A rotaxane-based single molecule pump combines cycling oxidation-reduction potential of the solution with kinetic barriers to moving backward to concentrate small ring molecules against an energy gradient.

Conference video: Microscopic Reversibility: The Organizing Principle for Molecular Machines

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 13th, 2015

At the 2013 Conference Dean Astumian contrasted macroscopic machines at static equilibrium and molecular machines at dynamic equilibrium, and presented information ratchets and microscopic reversibility as the organizing principle of molecular machines.

Conference video: Multi-Million Atom Simulations for Single Atom Transistor Structures

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 12th, 2015

At the 2013 Conference Gerhard Klimeck presented the work of his computational nanotechnology network modeling nanoelectronic devices, using simulations of multi-million atom domains to understand the function of single atom devices embedded in larger nanostructures.

Nanoparticles shepherd DNA into cells to regulate immune response

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 6th, 2015

DNA sequences designed to either stimulate a specific immune response or to down-regulate an undesirable response deliver superior performance when organized on nanoparticles to reach their intended cellular targets.

Nanowires and bacteria harnessed for artificial photosynthesis

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 4th, 2015

A prototype system to produce chemicals and fuels from sequestered carbon dioxide, water, and sunlight uses semiconductor nanowires to produce electron-hole pairs, which are then used by two types of bacteria to produce oxygen and a variety of useful chemical products.

Nanothreads formed from smallest possible diamonds

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 2nd, 2015

A new form of carbon produced by very slowly releasing benzene compressed at 200,000 times atmospheric pressure may be the strongest material possible.

Gold nanotubes engineered for diagnosis and therapy

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 30th, 2015

Gold nanotubes engineered to a specified length, modified surfaces, and to have other desirable characteristics showed expected abilities to enter tumor cells in laboratory studies, and to distribute to tissues within live mice as intended.

Foresight Institute Awards Feynman Prizes in Nanotechnology to Amanda S. Barnard, Joseph W. Lyding

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 23rd, 2015

The Theory Prize was given for research into diamond nanoparticles; the Experimental Prize was given for development of scanning tunneling microscope (STM) technology.

Solid-phase synthesis of custom-made DNA nanotubes

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 9th, 2015

Single-molecule spectroscopy makes possible adding one rung at a time to a foundational rung grafted to a surface to make a long nanotube scaffold of predetermined sequence.

DNA nanoswitches open window on molecular interactions

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 5th, 2015

Positioning two or more molecules along a long DNA strand can cause the DNA molecule to adopt different shapes if the molecules interact. Quickly and cheaply separating these shapes by a simple gel electrophoresis assay provides a wealth of information about how the molecules interact.

New scaffold for nanotechnology engineered from amyloid-like proteins

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 4th, 2015

Design and computational simulation of amyloid proteins of diverse functions from diverse sources enable the self-assembly of proteins that could provide scaffolds for diverse applications.

Cotranscriptional folding of single RNA strand added to nanotechnology toolkit

Posted by Jim Lewis on March 31st, 2015

RNA origami brings new dimensions to nucleic acid nanotechnology by exploiting the much greater variety of RNA structural motifs (compared to DNA) to do what cannot easily be done with DNA origami, like fold into predetermined nanostructures rapidly while being transcribed.

Automated synthesis expands nanotechnology building block repertoire

Posted by Jim Lewis on March 24th, 2015

Iterative coupling, purification, and cyclization of a large collection of organic building blocks promises a vast array of complex small and medium sized molecules as candidates for drug discovery, catalysis, and nanotechnology.

Targeted nanoparticles deliver molecules to resolve atherosclerotic inflammation

Posted by Jim Lewis on March 9th, 2015

In tests in a mouse model of advanced atherosclerosis, core-shell nanoparticles, composed of block copolymers and targeted to sites of inflammation and vascular injury, delivered a bioactive peptide that improved key properties of advanced plaques.

Atomically precise manufacturing as the future of nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on March 8th, 2015

A commentary over at Gizmodo argues that ideas about molecular manufacturing that sounded like science fiction in 1986 now sound more like science fact.

Small, fast, electrically-driven nanomotors

Posted by Jim Lewis on March 5th, 2015

Bulk nanoscale technologies were used to create three-segment nanowires of gold and nickel, and magnetic bearings of gold, nickel, and chromium. Combinations of DC and AC electric fields were used to assemble nanomotors that can spin at speeds up to 18,000r.p.m., and for up to 15 hours.

Designing mechanical functions into DNA nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on March 3rd, 2015

An overview of three decades of progress in DNA nanotechnology emphasizes bringing programmed motion to DNA nanostructures, including efforts to incorporate design principles from macroscopic mechanical engineering.

Mixing two types of nanoparticle triggers structure change

Posted by Jim Lewis on February 5th, 2015

Mixing two different types of cylindrical nanoparticles causes them to reorganize into smaller spherical nanoparticles. A mechanism to release drugs only inside cells that internalize both types?

Penta-graphene a new form of carbon for chemistry and nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on February 4th, 2015

Computational simulations demonstrate that pentagonal tiling to give a variant of graphene based on pentagons rather than on hexagons is dynamically, thermally, and mechanically stable.