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Nat Nanotechnol. 2011 Feb;6(2):116-20. doi: 10.1038/nnano.2010.268. Epub 2011 Jan 16.

Synthetic RNA-protein complex shaped like an equilateral triangle.

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Laboratory of Gene Biodynamics, Graduate School of Biostudies, Kyoto University, Oiwake-cho, Kitashirakawa, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606-8502, Japan.


Synthetic nanostructures consisting of biomacromolecules such as nucleic acids have been constructed using bottom-up approaches. In particular, Watson-Crick base pairing has been used to construct a variety of two- and three-dimensional DNA nanostructures. Here, we show that RNA and the ribosomal protein L7Ae can form a nanostructure shaped like an equilateral triangle that consists of three proteins bound to an RNA scaffold. The construction of the complex relies on the proteins binding to kink-turn (K-turn) motifs in the RNA, which allows the RNA to bend by ∼ 60° at three positions to form a triangle. Functional RNA-protein complexes constructed with this approach could have applications in nanomedicine and synthetic biology.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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