An Inexpensive LED-Based Fluorometer Used to Study a Hairpin-Based DNA Nanomachine
Fluorometers have become indispensable tools in the study of DNA-based nanomachines. The cost of such an instrument is usually outside the budget of a high school science department or that of an amateur scientist. This paper presents a low-cost fluorometer that can be assembled for the cost of approximately a hundred dollars. By monitoring Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) from the donor dye TET to the acceptor dye TAMRA, this fluorometer has been successfully used to follow the repeated opening and closing of a DNA hairpin nanomachine. This instrument makes possible the investigation of DNA-based nanotechnology or the performance of FRET-based molecular biology experiments within a high school setting.
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Mao, C., Sun, W., Shen, Z., Seeman, N.C.: A nanomechanical device based on the B-Z transition of DNA. Nature 297, 144–146 (1999)Google Scholar
- 3.Simmel, F.C., Yurke, B.: Using DNA to construct and power a nanoactuator. Phys. Rev. E 63 art. no. 041913 (2001)Google Scholar
- 7.Turberfield, A.J., Yurke, B., Mills Jr., A.P., Blake, M.I., Mitchel, J.C., Simmel, F.C.: Hybridization catalysis: controlled power for nanomachines. Phys. Rev. Lett. 90, art. no. 118102 (2002)Google Scholar
- 10.Niemeyer, C., Adler, M.: Nanomechanical Devices Based on DNA. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 41, 3779–3783 (2002)Google Scholar