Related topics: graphene · carbon nanotube

Shaping nanoparticles for improved quantum information technology

Particles that are mere nanometers in size are at the forefront of scientific research today. They come in many different shapes: rods, spheres, cubes, vesicles, S-shaped worms and even donut-like rings. What makes them worthy ...

Tunable optical chip paves way for new quantum devices

Researchers have created a silicon carbide (SiC) photonic integrated chip that can be thermally tuned by applying an electric signal. The approach could one day be used to create a large range of reconfigurable devices such ...

Can citric acid be a green alternative to protecting steel?

Nitric acid is currently the most widely used passivating solution to protect stainless steel from corrosion in industrial applications. But nitric acid is dangerous in multiple environmental, safety, and processes, due to ...

Graphene is 3-D as well as 2-D

Graphene is actually a 3-D material as well as a 2-D material, according to a new study from Queen Mary University of London.

page 1 from 23

DNA structure

DNA structure shows a variety of forms, both double-stranded and single-stranded. The mechanical properties of DNA, which are directly related to its structure, are a significant problem for cells. Every process which binds or reads DNA is able to use or modify the mechanical properties of DNA for purposes of recognition, packaging and modification. The extreme length (a chromosome may contain a 10 cm long DNA strand), relative rigidity and helical structure of DNA has led to the evolution of histones and of enzymes such as topoisomerases and helicases to manage a cell's DNA. The properties of DNA are closely related to its molecular structure and sequence, particularly the weakness of the hydrogen bonds and electronic interactions that hold strands of DNA together compared to the strength of the bonds within each strand.

Experimental techniques which can directly measure the mechanical properties of DNA are relatively new, and high-resolution visualization in solution is often difficult. Nevertheless, scientists have uncovered large amount of data on the mechanical properties of this polymer, and the implications of DNA's mechanical properties on cellular processes is a topic of active current research.

It is important to note the DNA found in many cells can be macroscopic in length - a few centimetres long for each human chromosome. Consequently, cells must compact or "package" DNA to carry it within them. In eukaryotes this is carried by spool-like proteins known as histones, around which DNA winds. It is the further compaction of this DNA-protein complex which produces the well known mitotic eukaryotic chromosomes.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA