Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Nano Lett. 2004 Sep;4(9):1717-23. doi: 10.1021/nl0494497.

Bottom-up Assembly of RNA Arrays and Superstructures as Potential Parts in Nanotechnology.

Author information

  • 1Department of Pathobiology and Department of Chemistry, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana 47907.


DNA and protein have been extensively scrutinized for feasibility as parts in nanotechnology, but another natural building block, RNA, has been largely ignored. RNA can be manipulated to form versatile shapes, thus providing an element of adaptability to DNA nanotechnology, which is predominantly based upon a double-helical structure. The DNA-packaging motor of bacterial virus phi29 contains six DNA-packaging RNAs (pRNA), which together form a hexameric ring via loop/loop interaction. Here we report that this pRNA can be redesigned to form a variety of structures and shapes, including twins, tetramers, rods, triangles, and 3D arrays several microns in size via interaction of programmed helical regions and loops. Three dimensional RNA array formation required a defined nucleotide number for twisting of the interactive helix and a palindromic sequence. Such arrays are unusually stable and resistant to a wide range of temperatures, salt concentrations, and pH.

PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center