A simple and greener way to separate DNA using branched silver microparticles is revealed by scientists in China.
Separation techniques are required for a multitude of applications from disease diagnosis to environmental monitoring. Many materials are used to separate complex chemical mixtures with more recent interest focussing on magnetic nanoparticles as they can be easily recovered.
However, preparation of magnetic nanoparticles requires a large amount of organic reagents and energy and it can be difficult to get the right dimensions. Now Erkang Wang and co-workers at the Changhun Institute of Applied Chemistry have developed crystalline silver particles, know as dendrites, as an alternative to magnetic nanoparticles for DNA separation. ‘The development of a facile, economical and simple strategy to synthesize a new monodisperse, easily-modified substitute for magnetic nanoparticles with controlled size is a great challenge’ explains Wang.
Link to journal article
Ultrasensitive nucleic acid detection using confocal laser scanning microscope with high crystalline silver dendrites
Xuan Yang, Xuping Sun, Zhaozi Lv, Weiwei Guo, Yan Du and Erkang Wang, Chem. Commun., 2010, DOI: 10.1039/c0cc03280h