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Addressable Molecular Node Assembly - a Generic Platform of Nano-scale Functionalised Surfaces Based on a Digitally Addressable Molecular Grid


The goal is a nano-technology platform based on a 100 nm size grid of addressable molecular building blocks, a novel bottom-up modular approach to place functional groups at defined positions in space with sub-nm precision. An almost complete freedom of ch oice, for grid assembly as well as for positioning of functional groups is based on a "digital" code for molecular recognition. The project involves very demanding synthetic and physico-chemical tasks: on the other hand, if successful the reward is enormou s as it can provide a basis for a range of forceful nanotechnological applications (it might even become the basis for future nanotechnology!). High structural fidelity and convenient assembly rates are achieved using DNA base-pair recognition and stacking into rigid double-helical structures. Each node has typically three oligonucleotide strands and a moiety for attachment of either a functional group or a lipid anchoring group, so that a group of six nodes are connected into a hexagon (energetically favou rable) providing a planar network of hexagons. Further kinetic robustness may be achieved. The partners represent the ultimate expertise in Europe in synthetic and supramolecular chemistry and in biophysical, colloidal and photophysical chemistry, needed f or the joint venture: 1. Synthetic strategy for node building blocks. 2. Tuning interactions and reaction rates to ascertain correct assembly into grid attached to lipid support. 3. Positioning of functional groups. 4. Analytical tools to follow assembly a nd verify structures. From here various applied projects will take over, attaching interesting functional groups at pre-determined positions on the grid map, and supramolecular structures extending perpendicular to the grid surface, into the 3rd dimension. The proposal fits well the call, being a novel bottom-up approach to achieve self-organising nanostructures with high resolution and control of properies and performance.


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