J. B Heng, A. Aksimentiev, C. Ho, P. Marks, Y. V. Grinkova, S. Sligar, K. Schulten, and G. Timp. Stretching DNA using an electric field in a synthetic nanopore. Nano Letters, 5:1883-1888, 2005. (PMC: 2441849)

HENG2005 The mechanical properties of DNA over segments comparable to the size of a protein-binding site (3-10nm) are examined using an electric field-induced translocation of single molecules through a nanometer diameter pore. DNA, immersed in an electrolyte, is forced through synthetic pores ranging from 0.5 to 1.5nm in radius in a 10nm thick Si$_{3}$N$_{4}$ membrane using an electric field. To account for the stretching and bending, we use molecular dynamics to simulate the translocation. We have found a threshold for translocation that depends on both the dimensions of the pore and the applied transmembrane bias. The voltage threshold coincides precisely with the stretching transition that occurs in dsDNA near 60pN.


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