Skip to main content

Freely-Speaking: Quick note on bio-based antennaes

With my thesis defense coming up this Monday, I really did not have as much time to share all the interesting things I came across lately. But I did not want to miss the chance to make a quick note to myself and the readers of this site of an interesting paper, titled "DNA-based programming of quantum dot valency, self-assembly and luminescence" just published in Nature Nanotechnology.

Grigory Tikhomirov et al. report

"the self-assembly of quantum dot complexes using cadmium telluride nanocrystals capped with specific sequences of DNA. Quantum dots with between one and five DNA-based binding sites are synthesized and then used as building blocks to create a variety of rationally designed assemblies, including cross-shaped complexes containing three different types of dots...Through changes in pH, the conformation of the complexes can also be reversibly switched, turning on and off the transfer of energy between the constituent quantum dots."
In other words, what they have created are tunable bio-based antennaes which could be used for more efficient usage of the available light spectrum in future solar panel designs as another blog at IEEE noted. Cool technology!

Popular posts from this blog

Focus on Algae - Part I: Bioremediation

After spending the last few blog posts on different aspects of dissimilatory bacteria, I want to switch the focus to a different class of organisms I have been interested in for a long time now. These are the algae. Algae comprise a large diversity of "sea weeds" and an even larger variety of single-celled organisms that mostly are capable of doing photosynthesis. They include the ordinary sea-weed, and make up a portion of the green slime found around the edges and the bottom of a pond. More exotic types of algae can live symbiotically - that is together with another organism in a mutually beneficial way. Lichens are an example of symbiotic relationship between algae and fungi. More information about the evolution and lineage of algae can be found in this wiki article.
Image via Wikipedia
Typically, these organisms are either not mentioned at all or only in conjunction with toxic algal blooms. But lately, algae, of course, have been in the news recently because of the promi…

Journal Club:”Direct Exchange of Electrons Within Aggregates of an Evolved Syntrophic Coculture of Anaerobic Bacteria” - OR: How Bacteria Hook up to Share Energy

Another curious observation made the science rounds the past week: wired, electric bacteria. Reading this article reminded me of a review article on dissimilatory bacteria I read before, and one of the most interesting talks I ever attended in my life titled "Eavesdropping on Bacterial Conversations".

What did they do?


Summers, who is Microbiologist working in the Lovley lab at the University of Massachusetts, was studying Fe(III) reducing bacteria in the soil. They wondered what would happen when Fe(III) reducing bacteria would deplete Fe(III) available in the soil. In order to study this question, the research group co-cultured two strains of geobacter bacteria: Geobacter metallireducens and Geobacter sulfurreducens. The research team thought that combining the former bacteria that can oxidize ethanol in order to obtain energy, but normally must pass obtained electrons onto Fe(III) which was not present in the solution, with the latter strain which cannot metabolize, but c…