DNA is the material that Nature has selected for carrying genetic information in all living cells. Its central role in biology and its unique physical-chemical properties have been the constant source of motivation for investigation by different disciplines. Carbon nanotube (CNT) is a relatively new man-made material with beautiful atomic and fascinating electronic structures. It has potential for many technological applications. We have experimentally identified a strong interaction between DNA and CNT that is dependent on both the DNA sequence and the CNT structure. This finding has prompted not only theoretical interests in understanding the nature of the interaction, but also technological exploitation of the interaction ranging from electronic devices to rapid DNA sequencing. In this talk, I will illustrate the use of DNA as a molecular tool to sort a synthetic mixture of single wall CNTs into pure chirality species, and discuss new insight on DNA structural properties derived from the CNT sorting method we have developed.
Host: Jerry Shan