Analysis and Design of Nucleic Acid Devices

Monday, October 29, 2007 - 2:30pm - 3:00pm
EE/CS 3-180
Niles Pierce (California Institute of Technology)
DNA and RNA are versatile construction materials.
By appropriately designing the sequence of bases in each strand, synthetic nucleic acid
systems can be programmed to self-assemble into complex structures that implement dynamic mechanical
tasks. Motivated by the challenge of encoding arbitrary mechanical function into
nucleic acid sequences, we are developing a suite of computational algorithms for
analyzing the underlying free energy landscapes that control the
behavior of a system. This talk will focus on new algorithms for predicting the
equilibrium properties of an entire test tube of interacting nucleic acid strands.
The utility of the approach will be demonstrated by elucidating the empirical
behavior of hybridization chain reaction mechanisms that are under development
with application to biosensing, transport, and therapeutics.
MSC Code: