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Published March 2012 | public
Book Section - Chapter

Beyond Watson and Crick: Programming DNA Self-assembly for Nanofabrication


The specificity of Watson-Crick base-pairing allows great control over the design and synthesis of artificial DNA nanostructures. Periodic one-dimensional (1D) tubes, 2D lattices, and 3D crystals are easily created from "DNA tiles" with spacings of 10-20 nanometers. "DNA origami" allows the folding of long DNA strands into arbitrary shapes and patterns up to about 100 nanometers in size with five nanometer features. This suggests that DNA self-assembly might be used for sublithographic fabrication of devices or even circuits. There are, however, a number of challenges. For example, compared to the inorganic materials used as semiconductors, DNA has poor electronic properties and must be augmented by other materials. Such challenges must be solved before DNA self-assembly can be used in a complete process for nanofabrication. We will present partial solutions to a few of them.

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© 2012 IEEE.

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