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Well it’s the final day at the conference today, but it’s the biggest yet, with three LIVE Question & Answer sessions to come. Follow the links above and below to access the conference now! Voting for the Delegates’ Choice poster award closes at 6pm GMT today (21st November) – so log on now to cast your votes.

Send your questions for the final three Question & Answer sessions now:

Platforms for engineering functional three-dimensional tissues
Suwan Jayasinghe - Live Q&A: 21st November, 3pm GMT | 10am EST

Atomic layer deposition for medical and biological applications
Roger Narayan - Live Q&A: 21st November, 4pm GMT | 11am EST

Bioresorbable electronics
John A. Rogers - Live Q&A: 21st November, 5pm GMT | 12pm EST

Plus, download some specially selected content, including papers from the recently published special issue on Progress in Bionanocomposites from the journal Progress in Polymer Science, and sponsored whitepapers.

Synthetic biopolymer nanocomposites for tissue engineering scaffolds - Review

Biobased plastics and bionanocomposites: Current status and future opportunities - Review

Measuring surface roughness with atomic force microscopy – Whitepaper

Yesterday in the conference, Jennifer Cha answered questions about DNA architectures for materials engineering, including:

What are the size limits on the structures that can be (self) assembled from DNA?
Jennifer Cha:
In terms of the DNA architectures themselves, there are fundamental limits to the overall sizes that can be achieved. If you consider a DNA origami for example, a 100nm x 100nm object is a very high molecular weight material. So trying to build something larger than that can be quite difficult. However, although I don't work in this particular research field, there has been some success recently in self-assembling several DNA origami structures into larger assemblies.

What are the specific challenges when it comes to interfacing biological systems with more traditional inorganic devices?

Jennifer Cha:
Some of the major challenges are the difficulties of transferring many of the inorganic nanomaterials into aqueous environments while maintaining their unique optical or electronic properties. For example, in the case of QDs, the transfer to water usually leads toward oxidation which is detrimental for many applications.

What's the significance of using Au nanoparticles? Could you use other types on NP?

Jennifer Cha:
The significance of using Au nanoparticles was to learn first how to assemble nanoparticles on surfaces through DNA interactions. It’s very easy to modify Au NPs with large amounts of DNA and have the particles also be stable in high salt. Over the past year, we have come up with new chemical strategies to attach DNA directly to the surface of CdS, CdSe and CdTe quantum dots that also prevent the QDs from being oxidized and impart stability to the nanoparticles in high salt. Thin films of these DNA-QDs have been prepared and some preliminary data show that a photovoltaic response can be observed from the prototype solar cells despite the QDs being surrounded by a large amount of DNA.

See you at the conference! #MTconference

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