Special Issue "The Application of DNA Nanotechnology"

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991). This special issue belongs to the section "Biology and Medicines".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2021).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Silvia Hernández-Ainsa
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute of Nanoscience of Aragon, University of Zaragoza, 50018 Zaragoza, Spain;
Institute of Material Science of Aragon (CSIC-University of Zaragoza), 50009 Zaragoza, Spain;
Aragonese Agency for Research and Development (ARAID), 50018 Zaragoza, Spain
Interests: DNA nanotechnology; Molecular self-assembly; Stimuli-responsive materials; Drug delivery; Biomimetics; Biosensors; Bioimaging; Nanomedicine

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

DNA nanotechnology is enabling the fabrication of increasingly sophisticated nanostructures. This manufacturing approach is fully programmable and reproducible as it relies on the accurate specificity of DNA base–pairing interactions. DNA sequences can therefore be rationally designed to self-assemble into constructs of well-defined dimensions, tailored shapes, and versatile functionality. Owing to this unique design adaptability, DNA nanotechnology has become a prolific source of customized nanomaterials for diverse purposes, such as drug delivery, bioimaging, single molecule detection, biomimetics, biosensing, protein scaffolding, and DNA computing. This Special Issue of Nanomaterials aims to gather exciting new contributions on this rapidly expanding research area. To this end, we invite researchers to submit original research articles, communications, and review articles covering recent advances on functional DNA-based nanostructures and their applications into different fields, including but not limited to biotechnology, biophysics, nanomedicine, and nanophotonics.

Dr. Silvia Hernández-Ainsa
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Nanomaterials is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • DNA self-assembly
  • DNA nanomachines
  • Stimuli-responsive DNA nanostructures
  • Biosensors
  • Bioimaging
  • Drug delivery
  • Biomimetics
  • Nanophotonics
  • Molecular electronics
  • DNA computing

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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Article
Effect of DNA Origami Nanostructures on hIAPP Aggregation
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(11), 2200; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10112200 - 04 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1172
Abstract
The aggregation of human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP) plays a major role in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), and numerous strategies for controlling hIAPP aggregation have been investigated so far. In particular, several organic and inorganic nanoparticles (NPs) have shown [...] Read more.
The aggregation of human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP) plays a major role in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), and numerous strategies for controlling hIAPP aggregation have been investigated so far. In particular, several organic and inorganic nanoparticles (NPs) have shown the potential to influence the aggregation of hIAPP and other amyloidogenic proteins and peptides. In addition to conventional NPs, DNA nanostructures are receiving more and more attention from the biomedical field. Therefore, in this work, we investigated the effects of two different DNA origami nanostructures on hIAPP aggregation. To this end, we employed in situ turbidity measurements and ex situ atomic force microscopy (AFM). The turbidity measurements revealed a retarding effect of the DNA nanostructures on hIAPP aggregation, while the AFM results showed the co-aggregation of hIAPP with the DNA origami nanostructures into hybrid peptide–DNA aggregates. We assume that this was caused by strong electrostatic interactions between the negatively charged DNA origami nanostructures and the positively charged peptide. Most intriguingly, the influence of the DNA origami nanostructures on hIAPP aggregation differed from that of genomic double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) and appeared to depend on DNA origami superstructure. DNA origami nanostructures may thus represent a novel route for modulating amyloid aggregation in vivo. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Application of DNA Nanotechnology)
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Article
Fast and Accurate Pneumocystis Pneumonia Diagnosis in Human Samples Using a Label-Free Plasmonic Biosensor
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(6), 1246; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10061246 - 26 Jun 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1366
Abstract
Pneumocystis jirovecii is a fungus responsible for human Pneumocystis pneumonia, one of the most severe infections encountered in immunodepressed individuals. The diagnosis of Pneumocystis pneumonia continues to be challenging due to the absence of specific symptoms in infected patients. Moreover, the standard diagnostic [...] Read more.
Pneumocystis jirovecii is a fungus responsible for human Pneumocystis pneumonia, one of the most severe infections encountered in immunodepressed individuals. The diagnosis of Pneumocystis pneumonia continues to be challenging due to the absence of specific symptoms in infected patients. Moreover, the standard diagnostic method employed for its diagnosis involves mainly PCR-based techniques, which besides being highly specific and sensitive, require specialized personnel and equipment and are time-consuming. Our aim is to demonstrate an optical biosensor methodology based on surface plasmon resonance to perform such diagnostics in an efficient and decentralized scheme. The biosensor methodology employs poly-purine reverse-Hoogsteen hairpin probes for the detection of the mitochondrial large subunit ribosomal RNA (mtLSU rRNA) gene, related to P. jirovecii detection. The biosensor device performs a real-time and label-free identification of the mtLSU rRNA gene with excellent selectivity and reproducibility, achieving limits of detection of around 2.11 nM. A preliminary evaluation of clinical samples showed rapid, label-free and specific identification of P. jirovecii in human lung fluids such as bronchoalveolar lavages or nasopharyngeal aspirates. These results offer a door for the future deployment of a sensitive diagnostic tool for fast, direct and selective detection of Pneumocystis pneumonia disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Application of DNA Nanotechnology)
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Review

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Review
Application of Nanotechnology for Sensitive Detection of Low-Abundance Single-Nucleotide Variations in Genomic DNA: A Review
Nanomaterials 2021, 11(6), 1384; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano11061384 - 24 May 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 981
Abstract
Single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are the simplest and most common type of DNA variations in the human genome. This class of attractive genetic markers, along with point mutations, have been associated with the risk of developing a wide range of diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular [...] Read more.
Single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are the simplest and most common type of DNA variations in the human genome. This class of attractive genetic markers, along with point mutations, have been associated with the risk of developing a wide range of diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular diseases, autoimmune diseases, and neurodegenerative diseases. Several existing methods to detect SNPs and mutations in body fluids have faced limitations. Therefore, there is a need to focus on developing noninvasive future polymerase chain reaction (PCR)–free tools to detect low-abundant SNPs in such specimens. The detection of small concentrations of SNPs in the presence of a large background of wild-type genes is the biggest hurdle. Hence, the screening and detection of SNPs need efficient and straightforward strategies. Suitable amplification methods are being explored to avoid high-throughput settings and laborious efforts. Therefore, currently, DNA sensing methods are being explored for the ultrasensitive detection of SNPs based on the concept of nanotechnology. Owing to their small size and improved surface area, nanomaterials hold the extensive capacity to be used as biosensors in the genotyping and highly sensitive recognition of single-base mismatch in the presence of incomparable wild-type DNA fragments. Different nanomaterials have been combined with imaging and sensing techniques and amplification methods to facilitate the less time-consuming and easy detection of SNPs in different diseases. This review aims to highlight some of the most recent findings on the aspects of nanotechnology-based SNP sensing methods used for the specific and ultrasensitive detection of low-concentration SNPs and rare mutations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Application of DNA Nanotechnology)
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Review
Strategies to Build Hybrid Protein–DNA Nanostructures
Nanomaterials 2021, 11(5), 1332; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano11051332 - 18 May 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 757
Abstract
Proteins and DNA exhibit key physical chemical properties that make them advantageous for building nanostructures with outstanding features. Both DNA and protein nanotechnology have growth notably and proved to be fertile disciplines. The combination of both types of nanotechnologies is helpful to overcome [...] Read more.
Proteins and DNA exhibit key physical chemical properties that make them advantageous for building nanostructures with outstanding features. Both DNA and protein nanotechnology have growth notably and proved to be fertile disciplines. The combination of both types of nanotechnologies is helpful to overcome the individual weaknesses and limitations of each one, paving the way for the continuing diversification of structural nanotechnologies. Recent studies have implemented a synergistic combination of both biomolecules to assemble unique and sophisticate protein–DNA nanostructures. These hybrid nanostructures are highly programmable and display remarkable features that create new opportunities to build on the nanoscale. This review focuses on the strategies deployed to create hybrid protein–DNA nanostructures. Here, we discuss strategies such as polymerization, spatial directing and organizing, coating, and rigidizing or folding DNA into particular shapes or moving parts. The enrichment of structural DNA nanotechnology by incorporating protein nanotechnology has been clearly demonstrated and still shows a large potential to create useful and advanced materials with cell-like properties or dynamic systems. It can be expected that structural protein–DNA nanotechnology will open new avenues in the fabrication of nanoassemblies with unique functional applications and enrich the toolbox of bionanotechnology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Application of DNA Nanotechnology)
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Review
Bottom-Up Self-Assembly Based on DNA Nanotechnology
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(10), 2047; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10102047 - 16 Oct 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1590
Abstract
Manipulating materials at the atomic scale is one of the goals of the development of chemistry and materials science, as it provides the possibility to customize material properties; however, it still remains a huge challenge. Using DNA self-assembly, materials can be controlled at [...] Read more.
Manipulating materials at the atomic scale is one of the goals of the development of chemistry and materials science, as it provides the possibility to customize material properties; however, it still remains a huge challenge. Using DNA self-assembly, materials can be controlled at the nano scale to achieve atomic- or nano-scaled fabrication. The programmability and addressability of DNA molecules can be applied to realize the self-assembly of materials from the bottom-up, which is called DNA nanotechnology. DNA nanotechnology does not focus on the biological functions of DNA molecules, but combines them into motifs, and then assembles these motifs to form ordered two-dimensional (2D) or three-dimensional (3D) lattices. These lattices can serve as general templates to regulate the assembly of guest materials. In this review, we introduce three typical DNA self-assembly strategies in this field and highlight the significant progress of each. We also review the application of DNA self-assembly and propose perspectives in this field. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Application of DNA Nanotechnology)
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