• Article |

    A modular de novo designed biosensor platform consisting of a cage and key molecule is developed, and used to create sensors for seven distinct proteins including the spike protein from SARS-CoV-2 and anti-SARS antibodies.

    • Alfredo Quijano-Rubio
    • , Hsien-Wei Yeh
    •  & David Baker
  • Article |

    Lateral-flow in vitro diagnostic assays based on fluorescent nanodiamonds, in which microwave-based spin manipulation is used to increase sensitivity, are demonstrated using the biotin–avidin model and by the single-copy detection of HIV-1 RNA.

    • Benjamin S. Miller
    • , Léonard Bezinge
    •  & Rachel A. McKendry
  • Article |

    The building blocks of the nanostructures observed on Drosophila corneas are determined, and then used to create artificial nanostructures with anti-reflective and anti-adhesive properties.

    • Mikhail Kryuchkov
    • , Oleksii Bilousov
    •  & Vladimir L. Katanaev
  • Letter |

    Computationally designed icosahedral protein-based assemblies can protect their genetic material and evolve in biochemical environments, suggesting a route to the custom design of synthetic nanomaterials for non-viral drug delivery.

    • Gabriel L. Butterfield
    • , Marc J. Lajoie
    •  & David Baker
  • Letter |

    By using DNA sequence information to encode the shapes of DNA origami building blocks, shape-programmable assemblies can be created, with sizes and complexities similar to those of viruses.

    • Klaus F. Wagenbauer
    • , Christian Sigl
    •  & Hendrik Dietz
  • Letter |

    All necessary strands for DNA origami can be created in a single scalable process by using bacteriophages to generate single-stranded precursor DNA containing the target sequences interleaved with self-excising DNA enzymes.

    • Florian Praetorius
    • , Benjamin Kick
    •  & Hendrik Dietz
  • Letter |

    Rotary molecular machines, activated by ultraviolet light, are able to perturb and drill into cell membranes in a controllable manner, and more efficiently than those exhibiting flip-flopping or random motion.

    • Víctor García-López
    • , Fang Chen
    •  & James M. Tour
  • Letter |

    The authors report a new biomimetic nanodelivery platform in which polymeric nanoparticles enclosed in the plasma membrane of human platelets are used for disease-relevant targeting, and the therapeutic potential of the concept is demonstrated in animal models of coronary restenosis and systemic bacterial infection.

    • Che-Ming J. Hu
    • , Ronnie H. Fang
    •  & Liangfang Zhang
  • Letter |

    Short carbon nanotubes spontaneously insert into lipid bilayers and live cell membranes to form channels with useful and tunable transport properties that make them a promising biomimetic nanopore platform for developing cell interfaces, studying nanofluidic transport in biological channels, and creating stochastic sensors.

    • Jia Geng
    • , Kyunghoon Kim
    •  & Aleksandr Noy
  • Letter |

    Single magnetic atoms on non-magnetic surfaces have magnetic moments that are usually destabilized within a microsecond, too speedily to be useful, but here the magnetic moments of single holmium atoms on a highly conductive metallic substrate can reach lifetimes of the order of minutes.

    • Toshio Miyamachi
    • , Tobias Schuh
    •  & Wulf Wulfhekel
  • Letter |

    A nanoscale thermometry technique that uses coherent manipulation of the electronic spin associated with nitrogen–vacancy colour centres in diamond makes it possible to detect temperature variations as small as 1.8 millikelvin in ultrapure samples and to control and map temperature gradients within living cells.

    • G. Kucsko
    • , P. C. Maurer
    •  & M. D. Lukin
  • Letter |

    Uniformly sized, structured spherical particles can be made in large quantities and across a wide range of sizes by an ingenious technique involving heating and drawing out multi-component fibres.

    • Joshua J. Kaufman
    • , Guangming Tao
    •  & Ayman F. Abouraddy
  • Letter |

    Propagating cracks—normally associated with material failure and viewed as undesirable—can be controlled in a film/substrate system, opening up new possibilities for nanofabrication and atomic-scale patterning.

    • Koo Hyun Nam
    • , Il H. Park
    •  & Seung Hwan Ko
  • Letter |

    Experiments using ultrafast mid-infrared light pulses on nanostructures access a new regime in photoelectron emission, revealing classical sub-cycle electron dynamics in optical near-fields and breaking a diffraction limit in strong-field physics.

    • G. Herink
    • , D. R. Solli
    •  & C. Ropers
  • Article |

    Thousands of quorum-sensing Escherichia coli colonies are synchronized over centimetres using redox signalling to create ‘biopixels’ that can sense trace amounts of arsenic in water.

    • Arthur Prindle
    • , Phillip Samayoa
    •  & Jeff Hasty
  • Letter |

    The ability of cells to respond to physical forces is central to development and physiology, but until now it has been difficult to directly measure forces across proteins in vivo. Here, however, a calibrated biosensor is described that can measure forces with high sensitivity across specific proteins in cells. This is applied to the vinculin protein, and a regulatory mechanism is revealed in which the force applied to vinculin determines whether focal adhesions assemble or disassemble.

    • Carsten Grashoff
    • , Brenton D. Hoffman
    •  & Martin A. Schwartz
  • Letter |

    Light–matter interactions in semiconductors hold great promise for numerous applications, but as device size is reduced such interactions typically weaken, potentially posing problems for applications at the nanoscale. Here the authors circumvent these limitations by producing colloidal particles with metallic cores and semiconducting shells, in which coupling of the plasmons in the metal to the excitons in the semiconductor is engineered to enhance light–matter interactions in the particle.

    • Jiatao Zhang
    • , Yun Tang
    •  & Min Ouyang
  • Letter |

    Many new functional materials and devices could be made if it were possible to rationally combine nanometre-scale particles into larger structures. An assembly line operating on the nanometre scale has now been demonstrated. It uses a DNA origami tile as a framework and track for the assembly process, three distinct DNA machines attached to the tile as programmable cargo-donating devices, and a DNA walker to generate the target product by moving along the track and collecting cargo from those devices that are switched on.

    • Hongzhou Gu
    • , Jie Chao
    •  & Nadrian C. Seeman
  • Letter |

    Supercooling is a phenomenon by which a liquid remains in its fluid phase well below its melting point. Supercooling can be inhibited by the presence of a solid surface, whereby crystalline surfaces cause adjacent atoms in the liquid to become ordered, inducing crystal nucleation of the melt. Here it is shown that a particular surface ordering of gold atoms on top of a silicon substrate can stabilize the liquid phase of a gold-silicon eutectic droplet, and thus enhance supercooling.

    • T. U. Schülli
    • , R. Daudin
    •  & A. Pasturel
  • Letter |

    It has previously been shown in mice and non-human primates that systemically delivered short RNA molecules can inhibit gene expression. Here it is shown that a short interfering RNA (siRNA) can be systemically delivered, using nanoparticles, to a solid tumour in humans. The siRNA mediates cleavage of its target mRNA, thereby also reducing levels of the encoded protein. This proof-of-principle study confirms the potential of this technology for treating human disease.

    • Mark E. Davis
    • , Jonathan E. Zuckerman
    •  & Antoni Ribas
  • Letter |

    Surface-enhanced Raman scattering is a powerful spectroscopy technique that can be used to study substances down to the level of single molecules. But the practical applications have been limited by the need for metal substrates with roughened surfaces or in the form of nanoparticles. Here a new approach — shell-insulated nanoparticle-enhanced Raman spectroscopy — is described, and its versatility demonstrated with numerous test substances.

    • Jian Feng Li
    • , Yi Fan Huang
    •  & Zhong Qun Tian