We describe a self-assembling DNA-based nanosystem for interrogating molecular interactions. The nanosystem contains a rigid supporting dumbbell-shaped frame, a cylindrical central core, and a mobile ring that is coaxial with the core. Motion of the ring is influenced by several control elements whose force-generating capability is based on the transition of single-stranded DNA to double-stranded DNA. These forces can be directed to act in opposition to adhesive forces between the ring and the frame thereby providing a mechanism for molecular detection and interrogation at the ring-frame interface. As proof of principle we use this system to evaluate base stacking adhesion and demonstrate detection of a soluble nucleic acid viral genome mimic.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/eric-henderson/13/