Reversible switching of the interparticle distance in DNA-templated gold nanoparticle dimers

Laurent Lermusiaux, Alexandra Sereda, Benjamin Portier, Eric Larquet, Sébastien Bidault

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55 Citations (Scopus)


We produce gold nanoparticle dimers with a surface-to-surface distance that varies reversibly by a factor of 3 when hybridizing or removing a single target DNA strand. The dimers are built on one DNA template that features a stem-loop enabling the interparticle distance change. Using electrophoresis, we reach 90% sample purities and demonstrate that this chemical process is reversible in solution at room temperature for a low molar excess of the target DNA strand. The kinetics of the reaction is asymmetric due to steric hindrance in the stem-loop opening process. Furthermore, a statistical analysis of cryo-electron microscopy measurements allows us to provide the first quantitative analysis of distance changes in chemically switchable nanoparticle assemblies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10992-10998
Number of pages7
JournalACS Nano
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 21 Dec 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • cryo-electron microscopy
  • DNA self-assembly
  • dynamic nanostructures
  • electrophoresis
  • gold nanoparticles

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