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Transport and self-organization across different length scales powered by motor proteins and programmed by DNA

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Adam WollmanORCiD


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In eukaryotic cells, cargo is transported on self-organized networks of microtubule trackways by kinesin and dynein motor proteins. Synthetic microtubule networks have previously been assembled in vitro, and microtubules have been used as shuttles to carry cargoes on lithographically defined tracks consisting of surface-bound kinesin motors. Here, we show that molecular signals can be used to program both the architecture and the operation of a self-organized transport system that is based on kinesin and microtubules and spans three orders of magnitude in length scale. A single motor protein, dimeric kinesin-1, is conjugated to various DNA nanostructures to accomplish different tasks. Instructions encoded into the DNA sequences are used to direct the assembly of a polar array of microtubules and can be used to control the loading, active concentration and unloading of cargo on this track network, or to trigger the disassembly of the network. © 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Wollman AJM, Sanchez-Cano C, Carstairs HMJ, Cross RA, Turberfield AJ

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Nature Nanotechnology

Year: 2014

Volume: 9

Issue: 1

Pages: 44-47

Print publication date: 01/01/2014

Online publication date: 10/11/2013

Acceptance date: 08/10/2013

ISSN (print): 1748-3387

ISSN (electronic): 1748-3395

Publisher: Nature Publishing Group


DOI: 10.1038/nnano.2013.230

PubMed id: 24213281


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