Elucidating Enzymatic Dynamics and Function using Carbon Nanotube Circuits
By combining molecular biology with the capabilities of solid-state electronics, we devised a new chip-based technique based on single-walled carbon nanotube (SWNT) field effect transistors (FETs) to explore the dynamics and functions of enzymes at the single molecule level. This electronic technique measures the time trajectory of the conformational dynamics of an individual enzyme, revealing its instantaneous dynamic and stochastic behaviors during binding and enzymatic catalysis that are inaccessible using traditional bulk techniques. To show the generality of this technique, we applied it to three enzymes: Lysozyme, DNA Polymerase I, and Protein Kinase A. By investigating the transduction mechanism, we established general design rules to enhance the signal of the protein under observation.