Molecular behavior of DNA origami in higher order self-assembly

Authors: Li, Z., Liu, M., Wang, L., Nangreave, J., Yan, H., and Liu, Y.
Title: Molecular behavior of DNA origami in higher order self-assembly
Source: Journal of the American Chemical Society
Year: 2010
Volume: 132
Pages: 13545-13552


DNA-based self-assembly is a unique method for achieving higher-order molecular architectures made possible by the fact that DNA is a programmable information-coding polymer. In the past decade, two main types of DNA nanostructures have been developed: branch-shaped DNA tiles with small dimensions (commonly up to ∼20 nm) and DNA origami tiles with larger dimensions (up to ∼100 nm). Here we aimed to determine the important factors involved in the assembly of DNA origami superstructures. We constructed a new series of rectangular-shaped DNA origami tiles in which parallel DNA helices are arranged in a zigzag pattern when viewed along the DNA helical axis, a design conceived in order to relax an intrinsic global twist found in the original planar, rectangular origami tiles. Self-associating zigzag tiles were found to form linear arrays in both diagonal directions, while planar tiles showed significant growth in only one direction. Although the series of zigzag tiles were designed to promote two-dimensional array formation, one-dimensional linear arrays and tubular structures were observed instead. We discovered that the dimensional aspect ratio of the origami unit tiles and intertile connection design play important roles in determining the final products, as revealed by atomic force microscopy imaging. This study provides insight into the formation of higher-order structures from self-assembling DNA origami tiles, revealing their unique behavior in comparison with conventional DNA tiles having smaller dimensions.

Date of online publication: Wed, 2010-09-08
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