3d DNA nanostructures: The nanoscale architect
Structural DNA nanotechnology is a pioneering biotechnology that presents the oppor-tunity to engineer DNA-based hardware that will mediate a profound interface to the nanoscale. To date, an enormous library of shaped 3D DNA nanostructures have been designed and assem-bled. Moreover, recent research has demonstrated DNA nanostructures that are not only static but can exhibit specific dynamic motion. DNA nanostructures have thus garnered significant research interest as a template for pursuing shape and motion-dependent nanoscale phenomena. Potential applications have been explored in many interdisciplinary areas spanning medicine, biosensing, nanofabrication, plasmonics, single-molecule chemistry, and facilitating biophysical studies. In this review, we begin with a brief overview of general and versatile design techniques for 3D DNA nanos-tructures as well as some techniques and studies that have focused on improving the stability of DNA nanostructures in diverse environments, which is pivotal for its reliable utilization in downstream applications. Our main focus will be to compile a wide body of existing research on applications of 3D DNA nanostructures that demonstrably rely on the versatility of their mechanical design. Furthermore, we frame reviewed applications into three primary categories, namely encapsulation, surface templating, and nanomechanics, that we propose to be archetypal shape-or motion-related functions of DNA nanostructures found in nanoscience applications. Our intent is to identify core concepts that may define and motivate specific directions of progress in this field as we conclude the review with some perspectives on the future.
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