Single Molecule Electrophoresis using Nanochannel Columns Fabricated in Thermoplastics

Project: Research project

Description

The focus of this project is an unprecedented demonstration of single-molecule electrophoresis using nanochannel columns fabricated in thermoplastics. To facilitate this demonstration, we seek to understand the transport dynamics of small (deoxynucleotide monophosphates, dNMPs) and large molecules (double-stranded DNAs, dsDNAs) electrokinetically traveling through polymer nanochannel columns. Nanochannel columns will be produced in thermoplastics using nanoimprint lithography (NIL) and carbon imprinting tools. We also will generate monolayer coatings on column walls activated using UV/O3 or O2 plasmas to understand the effects of surface charge, chemistry and topology on the transport behavior of single molecules. Several fluorescence imaging modalities will be implemented including super-resolution microscopy and particle tracking of fluorescently-labeled molecules to understand the transport properties under conditions when the Debye length (?D) is comparable to the column critical dimension (h). For DNAs carrying fluorescent labels, super-resolution microscopy will enable the investigation of uncoiling dynamics following inclusion into nanochannels as well as the transverse migration of dNMPs.
StatusActive
Effective start/end date8/15/157/31/18

Funding

  • National Science Foundation (NSF)

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electrophoresis
molecules
deoxyribonucleic acid
microscopy
Debye length
topology
lithography
transport properties
inclusions
chemistry
coatings
fluorescence
carbon
polymers