University of Minnesota
School of Physics & Astronomy
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Elias Puchner

Nanoparticle self-assembly on a DNA-scaffold written by single-molecule cut-and-paste
Puchner EM, Kufer SK, Strackharn M, Stahl SW, and Gaub HE, Nano Letters 8, 3692-5 (2008)

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Self-assembly guided by molecular recognition has in the past been employed to assemble nanoparticle superstructures like hypercrystals or nanoparticle molecules. An alternative approach, the direct molecule-by-molecule assembly of nanoscale superstructures, was demonstrated recently. Here we present a hybrid approach where we first assemble a pattern of binding sites one-by-one at a surface and then allow different nanoparticles to attach by self-assembly. For this approach, biotin bearing DNA oligomers were picked up from a depot using a cDNA strand bound to an AFM tip. These units were deposited in the target area by hybridization, forming a recognition pattern on this surface. Fluorescent semiconductor nanoparticles conjugated with streptavidin were allowed to assemble on this scaffold and to form the final nanoparticle superstructures.