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Tiny machines made of DNA origami may make antibiotics work better


Scientist

Tiny machines made of DNA origami may make antibiotics work better

By Clare Wilson E. coli bacteria (in red) coated with DNA origami nanostructures (in green)Courtesy Ioanna MelaOrigami isn’t usually thought of as a weapon – but it can be deadly when it is made of DNA. Tiny devices made from intricately folded DNA strands can boost the potency of antibacterial chemicals by bringing individual molecules…

Tiny machines made of DNA origami may make antibiotics work better

By Clare Wilson

DNA origami

E. coli bacteria (in red) coated with DNA origami nanostructures (in green)

Courtesy Ioanna Mela

Origami isn’t usually thought of as a weapon – but it can be deadly when it is made of DNA. Tiny devices made from intricately folded DNA strands can boost the potency of antibacterial chemicals by bringing individual molecules into direct contact with microbes.

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When tested on two common kinds of bacteria, the folded DNA slowed their growth rate. Ioanna Mela at the University of Cambridge says the approach could be directed against any kind of microbe. “This is proof of principle,” she says.

DNA …

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