Mar 28, 2012Science and Technology
Molecular braille created to identify DNA molecules

Researchers at New York University and University of California, Los Angeles have developed a method called ‘DNA Molecular Recognition’ that uses nanoparticles to turn DNA molecules into a form of molecular braille that can be read in the scale of nanometers, or one billionth of a meter, using high-speed Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM). They achieved this by taking nanoscopic pictures of the molecules themselves. This method can help detect sequence differences in individual molecules. The research team believes their method will have many practical uses, such as super-sensitive detection of DNA molecules in genomic research and medical diagnostics as well as in identifying pathogens. “The long term goal of our team’s research is to dissect, understand and control the biology of single cells in complex tissues, such as brain, or in malignant tumors,” Jason Reed, co-leader of the study, said.

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