Single molecule nanometronome

Chittanon Buranachai, Sean A. McKinney, Taekjip Ha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We constructed a DNA-based nanomechanical device called the nanometronome. Our device is made by introducing complementary single-stranded overhangs at the two arms of the DNA four-way junction. The ticking rates of this stochastic metronome depend on ion concentrations and can be changed by a set of DNA-based switches to deactivate/reactivate the sticky end. Since the device displays clearly distinguishable responses even with a single base pair difference, it may lead to a single molecule sensor of minute sequence differences of a target DNA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)496-500
Number of pages5
JournalNano letters
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2006
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering


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