301 Controlling RNA Folding and Assembly for Designing New Nano-Biomaterials

Thursday, November 5, 2009: 2:20 PM
Ballroom C+D (Camino Real Hotel)
Luc Jaeger , Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of California at Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA
One of the major challenges facing contemporary nanotechnology is the ability to organize biological materials into versatile, programmable three-dimensional (3D) supra-molecular shapes. In particular, obtaining full control over their geometry, topology, directionality and addressability has proven difficult. In this presentation, we will present different strategies to design and engineer versatile, programmable RNA molecules that self-assemble into a variety of 3D architectures with precise control over their size and composition. These RNA nano-structures can be used as scaffoldings for carrying functional aptamers or therapeutic RNAs for bio-medical and synthetic biology applications. Considering the multiple functions of RNA in all living cells, RNA-based nano-materials will likely play an important role in the future of nano-biotechnology.