Compression and free expansion of single DNA molecules in nanochannels

Christian Hermann Reccius, John Thomas Mannion, Joshua David Cross, H. G. Craighead

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

114 Scopus citations


We investigated compression and ensuing expansion of long DNA molecules confined in nanochannels. Transverse confinement of DNA molecules in the nanofluidic channels leads to elongation of their unconstrained equilibrium configuration. The extended molecules were compressed by electrophoretically driving them into porelike constrictions inside the nanochannels. When the electric field was turned off, the DNA strands expanded. This expansion, the dynamics of which has not previously been observable in artificial systems, is explained by a model that is a variation of de Gennes's polymer model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number268101
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number26
StatePublished - Dec 31 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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