DNA-binding by Functionalized Gold Nanoparticles: Mechanism and Structural Requirements


* Vincent M. Rotello, rotello@chem.umass.edu


A family of nanoparticles featuring surfaces of varying hydrophobicity was synthesized. The efficiency of DNA-binding was determined, demonstrating in a fivefold modulation in binding a 37-mer DNA strand. Nanoparticle-binding causes a reversible conformational change in the DNA structure, as demonstrated by circular dichroism and fluorescence experiments. Furthermore, the affinity of the nanoparticle for the DNA can be regulated by external agents, though stability of the complex is observed at relatively high ionic strengths.