Cytosine, the double helix and DNA self-assembly

Timsit, Youri and Varnai, Peter (2011) Cytosine, the double helix and DNA self-assembly. Journal of Molecular Recognition, 24 (2). pp. 137-138.

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DNA self-assembly has crucial implications in reading out the genetic information in the cell and in nanotechnological applications. In a recent paper, self-assembled DNA crystals displaying spectacular triangular motifs have been described (Zheng et al., 2009). The authors claimed that their data demonstrate the possibility to rationally design well-ordered macromolecular 3D DNA lattice with precise spatial control using sticky ends. However, the authors did not recognize the fundamental features that control DNA self-assembly in the lateral direction. By analysing available crystallographic data and simulating a DNA triangle, we show that the double helix geometry, sequence-specific cytosinephosphate interactions and divalent cations are in fact responsible for the precise spatial assembly of DNA.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Life Sciences > Chemistry
Depositing User: Peter Varnai
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 19:31
Last Modified: 01 Mar 2012 11:51
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