Foresight Institute Logo
Image of nano

Archive for the 'Molecular manufacturing' Category

Assembling a large, stable, icosahedral protein molecular cage

Posted by Jim Lewis on September 9th, 2016

A trimeric protein was designed to self assemble into a 60 unit icosahedron with a roomy interior that might find use to ferry molecular cargo into cells or as a chemical reactor.

Chemical fuel keeps molecular motor moving

Posted by Jim Lewis on September 4th, 2016

Removing the necessity of providing several different chemical fuels in a series of distinct steps, a novel chemically-fueled molecular motor autonomously produces movement as long as the fuel supply lasts.

Rational improvement of DNA nanodevice function

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 13th, 2016

Recent research documents a structure-based rational design strategy combining molecular dynamics and single molecule imaging to improve the performance of a DNA tweezers that accurately positions an enzyme and its cofactor.

Atomically precise location of dopants a step toward quantum computers

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 4th, 2016

Precise matching of STM images and theoretical calculations provides exact lattice locations of dopant atoms, advancing the prospects for silicon-based quantum computers.

Watching individual chemical bonds during a reaction

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 2nd, 2016

Combining computational nanotechnology with a noncontact-atomic force microscope probe tipped by a single CO molecule allowed researchers to visualize the dance of individual chemical bonds during a complex organic reaction on a silver surface.

Peptoid nanosheets assemble by different design rule

Posted by Jim Lewis on July 31st, 2016

Chains of monomers joined by non-biological peptoid bonds follow different rules of self-assembly and form structures not found in chains joined by the peptide bonds used to form proteins.

Engineered protein assembles molecules into atomically precise lattice

Posted by Jim Lewis on July 30th, 2016

An engineered protein controls the assembly of C60 fullerene molecules into an atomically precise lattice that conducts electricity while neither component alone would.

Protein design provides a novel metabolic path for carbon fixation

Posted by Jim Lewis on June 8th, 2016

Computational design of an enzyme that carboligates three one-carbon molecules to form one three-carbon molecule, an activity that does not exist in nature, provides proof-of-principle for a novel metabolic pathway for carbon fixation.

Triple helices stabilize macroscopic crystals for DNA nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 5th, 2016

A DNA strand capable of forming a triple helix with a portion of the DNA double helices in a macroscopic DNA crystal enhances the weak interactions holding the crystal together so that the crystal remains stable in the absence of a high ionic strength environment.

Macroscopic DNA crystals from molecular tensegrity triangles

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 2nd, 2016

Structural DNA nanotechnology: progress toward a precise self-assembling three dimensional scaffold by building macroscopic crystals from nanoscale structures.

Five ionized atoms provide scalable implementation of quantum computation algorithm

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 3rd, 2016

Five calcium ions held several micrometers apart in an ion trap and manipulated by laser pulses implement Shor’s factorization algorithm more efficiently than previous implementations.

Tightly-fitted DNA parts form dynamic nanomachine

Posted by Jim Lewis on March 10th, 2016

A rotor with DNA origami parts held together by an engineered tight fit instead of by covalent bonds can revolve freely, driven by Brownian motion and dwelling at engineered docking sites.

Multiple advances in de novo protein design and prediction

Posted by Jim Lewis on February 14th, 2016

New families of protein structures, barrel proteins for positioning small molecules, self-assembling protein arrays, and precision sculpting of protein architectures highlight de novo protein design advances.

Rational design of protein architectures not found in nature

Posted by Jim Lewis on February 11th, 2016

Computational design of proteins satisfying predetermined geometric constraints produced stable proteins with the designed structure that are not found in nature.

De novo protein design space extends far beyond biology

Posted by Jim Lewis on February 3rd, 2016

A fully automated design protocol generates dozens of designs for proteins based on helix-loop-helix-loop repeat units that are very stable, have crystal structures that match the design, have very different overall shapes, and are unrelated to any natural protein.

DNA nanotechnology controls which molecules enter cells

Posted by Jim Lewis on January 13th, 2016

DNA building blocks mimic biological ion channels to more precisely control which molecules can cross a biological membrane.

Molecular arm grabs, transports, releases molecular cargo

Posted by Jim Lewis on January 12th, 2016

A molecular robotic arm synthesized from small synthetic organic molecules uses cyclic changes in pH and other reaction conditions to grab and release a cargo molecule, and swing the cargo back and forth between the two ends of the molecular platform.

Using DNA nanotechnology to position molecules with atomic precision

Posted by Jim Lewis on December 9th, 2015

German researchers have used scaffolded DNA origami to adjust the angle of a DNA hinge joint by altering the length of special “adjuster helices”, causing molecules attached to the sides of the hinge to be displaced by as little as 0.04 nm.

Architecture for atomically precise quantum computer in silicon

Posted by Jim Lewis on November 9th, 2015

Building on previous work on single atom transistors and single atom qubits, Australian researchers have incorporated a quantum error correction code to make possible a scalable 3D silicon chip architecture that could lead to operational quantum computers.

One-directional rotation in a new artificial molecular motor

Posted by Jim Lewis on November 5th, 2015

Independent rotation of two wheels attached to either end of an axle has been achieved in a light-driven artificial molecular motor, suggesting a basis for a nanometer-scale transport system.