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Biophysics and Quantitative Biology Seminar: "Probing the molecules of life using high-resolution nanopores"

SpeakerDr. Meni Wanunu, Experimental Biological Physics, Northeastern University, Boston
Date Feb 28, 2014
Time 2:00 pm  
Location B102 CLSL (Chemical and Life Sciences Laboratory)
Sponsor Center for the Physics of Living Cells
Contact Angi Meharry
Phone 217-300-0100
Event type Other
Views 1869

Solid-state nanopores have emerged as a useful tool for studying biopolymers. The need for mapping genomes, detecting subtle chemical and epigenetic changes to nucleic acids and proteins, and identifying macromolecular conformations, makes nanopores attractive single-molecule label-free sensors. In this talk, I will describe the use of small (<5 nm diameter) synthetic nanopores for DNA, RNA, and protein detection. First, I will discuss protein detection, protein complex detection, and protein volumetric measurements using a nanopore. Next, I will discuss the use of nanopores as a force apparatus for unraveling DNA-histone complexes and for probing RNA conformation. Finally, I will describe our remediation of irregular DNA transport through small pores. Specifically, we have found that optimizing the nanopore geometry allows for a regulated DNA transport process, in which DNA velocity is well-behaved yet slow enough to allow true current measurements from individual base pairs. This advancement will allow progress in quantitative nanopore-based assessment of polymer length and genome sequence positioning with unprecedented detail.

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