Unraveling Single-Stranded DNA in a Solid-State Nanopore

SW Kowalczyk, MW Tuijtel, SP Donkers, C Dekker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)


Solid-state nanopores are an emerging class of single-molecule sensors. Whereas most studies so far focused on doublestranded DNA (dsDNA) molecules, exploration of single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) is of great interest as well, for example to employ such a nanopore device to read out the sequence. Here, we study the translocation of long random-sequence ssDNA through nanopores. Using atomic force microscopy, we observe the ssDNA to hybridize into a random coil, forming blobs of around 100 nm in diameter for 7 kb ssDNA. These large entangled structures have to unravel, when they arrive at the pore entrance. Indeed, we observe strong blockade events with a translocation time that is exponentially dependent on voltage, ¿ ~ e-V/V0. Interestingly, this is very different than for dsDNA, for which ¿ ~ 1/V. We report translocations of ssDNA but also of ssDNA-dsDNA constructs where we compare the conductance-blockade levels for ssDNA versus dsDNA as a function of voltage.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1414-1420
Number of pages7
JournalNano Letters: a journal dedicated to nanoscience and nanotechnology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2010


  • academic journal papers
  • CWTS JFIS >= 2.00

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Unraveling Single-Stranded DNA in a Solid-State Nanopore'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this