Dynamic DNA devices and assemblies formed by shape-complementary, non-base pairing 3D components

Thomas Gerling, Klaus F. Wagenbauer, Andrea M. Neuner, Hendrik Dietz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

520 Scopus citations


We demonstrate that discrete three-dimensional (3D)DNAcomponents can specifically self-assemble in solution on the basis of shape-complementarity and without base pairing. Using this principle,we produced homo-and heteromultimeric objects, includingmicrometer-scale one-and two-stranded filaments and lattices, aswell as reconfigurable devices, including an actuator, a switchable gear, an unfoldable nanobook, and a nanorobot.These multidomain assemblies were stabilized via short-ranged nucleobase stacking bonds that compete against electrostatic repulsion between the components' interfaces. Using imaging by electron microscopy, ensemble and single-molecule fluorescence resonance energy transfer spectroscopy, and electrophoretic mobility analysis, we show that the balance between attractive and repulsive interactions, and thus the conformation of the assemblies, may be finely controlled by global parameters such as cation concentration or temperature and by an allosteric mechanism based on strand-displacement reactions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1446-1452
Number of pages7
Issue number6229
StatePublished - 27 Mar 2015


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