In biological systems and nanoscale assemblies, the self-association of DNA is typically studied and applied in the context of the evolved or directed design of base sequences that give complementary pairing, duplex formation, and specific structural motifs. Here we consider the collective behavior of DNA solutions in the distinctly different regime where DNA base sequences are chosen at random or with varying degrees of randomness. We show that in solutions of completely random sequences, corresponding to a remarkably large number of different molecules, e.g., approximately 1012 for random 20-mers, complementary still emerges and, for a narrowrange of oligomer lengths, produces a subtle hierarchical sequence of structured self-assembly and organization into liquid crystal (LC) phases. This ordering follows from the kinetic arrest of oligomer association into long-lived partially paired double helices, followed by reversible association of these pairs into linear aggregates that in turn condense into LC domains.

Liquid crystal self-assembly of random-sequence DNA oligomers / T. Bellini, G. Zanchetta, T. Fraccia, R. Cerbino, E. Tsai, G.P. Smith, M.J. Moran, D.M. Walba, N.A. Clark. - In: PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. - ISSN 0027-8424. - 109:4(2012 Jan 24), pp. 1110-1115.

Liquid crystal self-assembly of random-sequence DNA oligomers

T. Bellini
;
G. Zanchetta
Secondo
;
T. Fraccia;R. Cerbino;
2012

Abstract

In biological systems and nanoscale assemblies, the self-association of DNA is typically studied and applied in the context of the evolved or directed design of base sequences that give complementary pairing, duplex formation, and specific structural motifs. Here we consider the collective behavior of DNA solutions in the distinctly different regime where DNA base sequences are chosen at random or with varying degrees of randomness. We show that in solutions of completely random sequences, corresponding to a remarkably large number of different molecules, e.g., approximately 1012 for random 20-mers, complementary still emerges and, for a narrowrange of oligomer lengths, produces a subtle hierarchical sequence of structured self-assembly and organization into liquid crystal (LC) phases. This ordering follows from the kinetic arrest of oligomer association into long-lived partially paired double helices, followed by reversible association of these pairs into linear aggregates that in turn condense into LC domains.
phase-equilibria; strand exchange; nematic phases; hard-rods; crystallization; copolymer; systems; duplex
Settore FIS/07 - Fisica Applicata(Beni Culturali, Ambientali, Biol.e Medicin)
Settore FIS/03 - Fisica della Materia
30-giu-2011
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/169654
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