Controlled DNA-Templated Metal Deposition: Towards Ultra-Thin Nanowires

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In this paper, we report the metallization of a dsDNA template using a novel photography-derived two-step strategy in which dsDNA is first complexed with Ag(I) ions and then irradiated with UV light at 254 nm. The nucleobases act as light harvesters and sensitizers, triggering the photoreduction of the complexed silver ions. This process yields a silver nanoparticles blueprint along the DNA strand. The silver latent image is then developed by depositing metallic nickel through an electroless plating process. This photography-derived procedure generates very homogeneous and evenly distributed strings of silver-core/nickel-shell nanoparticles. Although still discontinuous, we believe that such chains can serve as the base for obtaining continuous metal nanowires. Furthermore, this process can most likely be extended to other plating metals, resulting in a broadly general procedure for metallizing DNA with a variety of different materials. Because of the intrinsic simplicity in using light as the key step, this methodology might be amenable to large-scale development, eventually leading to a very efficient molecular-photolithography process.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: August 1, 2006

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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