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Chemphyschem. 2017 Nov 3;18(21):2977-2980. doi: 10.1002/cphc.201700809. Epub 2017 Sep 22.

Enhanced Stability of DNA Nanostructures by Incorporation of Unnatural Base Pairs.

Liu Q1,2, Liu G3, Wang T1, Fu J3,2, Li R4, Song L1,2, Wang ZG1, Ding B1,2, Chen F3,2.

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CAS Center for Excellence in Nanoscience, National Center for Nanoscience and Technology, Beijing, 100190, P. R. China.
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100049, P. R. China.
CAS Key Laboratory of Genome Sciences & Information, Beijing Institute of Genomics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100101, P. R. China.
Big Data Center, Beijing Institute of Genomics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100101, P. R. China.


Self-assembled DNA nanostructures hold great promise in the fields of nanofabrication, biosensing and nanomedicine. However, the inherent low stability of the DNA double helices, formed by weak interactions, largely hinders the assembly and functions of DNA nanostructures. In this study, we redesigned and constructed a six-arm DNA junction by incorporation of the unnatural base pairs 5-Me-isoC/isoG and A/2-thioT into the double helices. They not only retained the structural integrity of the DNA nanostructure, but also showed enhanced thermal stability and resistance to T7 Exonuclease digestion. This research may expand the applications of DNA nanostructures in nanofabrication and biomedical fields, and furthermore, the genetic alphabet expansion with unnatural base pairs may enable us to construct more complicated and diversified self-assembled DNA nanostructures.


DNA nanostructures; enzymatic digestion; self-assembly; thermal stability; unnatural base pairs

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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