We report that double-helical DNA constraints can be used to control the conformation of another molecule, RNA. When a covalently attached DNA constraint is structurally incompatible with the native Mg2+-dependent RNA conformation, RNA folding is disrupted, as revealed by nondenaturing gel electrophoresis and independently by chemical probing. Our approach is distinct from other efforts in DNA nanotechnology, which have prepared DNA objects by self-assembly, built static DNA lattices for assembly of other objects, and created nanomachines made solely of DNA. In contrast, our dynamic use of DNA to control the conformations of other macromolecules should have wide impact in nanotechnology applications ranging from materials science to biology.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry