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Dr. Dan Luo Gave the Report Named “Using DNA as Both a Genetic and a Generic Material” Online

Date:2021-09-16 | Visitcount:1085

On 9th September 2021, Dr. Dan Luo, a professor from the Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering at Cornell University, gave a presentation entitled “Using DNA as Both a Genetic and a Generic Material.” He is currently also a faculty member in Nanobiotechnology Center, Cornell Center for Materials Research, Biomedical Engineering and New Life Science Initiatives at Cornell.

Dr. Luo’s research interests have focused on using DNA as both a genetic and a generic material for real-world applications, including biosensing, drug discovery, drug delivery, alternative energy, photonic-electronic devices, etc.

Nucleic acids play a critical role in living organisms as the carriers of genetic information. In the presentation, Dr. Luo explained why DNA perhaps was the smartest molecule on earth. DNA’s molecule could be made by machine and be programmed, contributing to its application as a material with the characteristic of nanoscale and evolvable. Dr. Luo introduced his research about using DNA and RNA as both generic and genetic materials, using DNA as a true polymer and developing generic DNA materials, including tree-shaped DNA, DNA gels and DNA-nanoparticle hybrid assemblies. Multiplexed detections were achieved based on tree-shaped DNA nano-barcodes, detecting different color ratios rather than different colors. His group successfully manufactured a DNA-based free-standing ultrathin nanoparticle membrane that was the thinnest monolayer in the world. 

Dr. Luo's research group also aimed at developing portable instruments. The achievements of DNA-based material have shown a possible application in many fields, such as nonpoint source pollution, control release of drugs. Meanwhile, Dr. Luo supplemented their latest research about making biomass DNA-based material, which was more economical and sustainable than traditional fuel. “DNA is both a genetic material and a generic material, a truly amazing material.” Dr. Luo pointed out.

In the lecture, Dr. Luo used many metaphors and videos to present his research results, which appealed to students vividly. Dr. Luo answered the questions raised by students detailly to make them more straightforward.

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