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Keywords:

  • FRET;
  • hybridization;
  • molecular beacons;
  • RNA;
  • single-nucleotide polymorphism
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

A change of the energy transfer mechanism (from contact quenching to FRET) increases the responsiveness of fluorescent hybridization probes. The communication between a responsive fluorescent base surrogate (see picture, green) and a near-infrared dye (red) in peptide nucleic acid provides probes that are extremely dark in the single strand. Hybridization furnishes strong fluorescence increase with a 200 nm shift in emission maximum.