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Assembling DNA through Affinity Binding to Achieve Ultrasensitive Protein Detection



Recent advances in DNA assembly and affinity binding have enabled exciting developments of nanosensors and ultrasensitive assays for specific proteins.16 These sensors and assays share three main attractive features:1, 4, 7 1) the detection of proteins can be accomplished by the detection of amplifiable DNA, thereby dramatically enhancing the sensitivity; 2) assembly of DNA is triggered by affinity binding of two or more probes to a single target molecule, thereby resulting in increased specificity; and 3) the assay is conducted in solution with no need for separation, thus making the assay attractive for potential point-of-care applications. We illustrate here the principle of assembling DNA through affinity binding, and we highlight novel applications to the detection of proteins.