When: Thursday, February 20th, 2020 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
Location: CNSI at UCLA,
570 Westwood Plaza, Building 114 Los Angeles, CA 90095
Nanofluidic channels have emerged as a promising tool to stretch and visualize single
DNA molecules. I will discuss two different lines of research in my group regarding
nanofluidics and DNA.
We have developed a one step method to map single DNA molecules with kbp
resolution. We have applied this method extensively to identification and
characterization of bacterial plasmids. Plasmids are relevant because they are
responsible for a large fraction of the spread of antibiotic resistance. I will
demonstrate how we used our assay to characterize plasmids from a nosocomial
outbreak and how this might be used in clinics. I will also show how the method can
be used to type the bacteria by mapping the chromosomal DNA. We have recently
turned our focus to mapping the human genome and I will show preliminary data on
We are also using the nanochannels for studying DNA-protein interactions. An
important breakthrough to study proteins in nanochannels was our introduction of
lipid bilayers as a passivation coating for nanofluidic channels. Using lipid passivated
channels, we have been studying several different DNA-binding proteins, including
bacterial RecA, Cox from bacteriophages and NC from the HIV-1 virus. Recent
efforts have been devoted to repair of DNA double-strand breaks, both in Non-
Homologous End-Joining and Homologous Recombination.
Fredrik Westerlund is Professor at the Division of Chemical Biology, Department of Biology and Biological Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden. FW obtained his PhD in Biophysical Chemistry at Chalmers in 2006 which was followed by a first post doc at the University of Copenhagen 2007-2009 and a second at Gothenburg University 2009-2010. In 2010 FW established his own group at Chalmers focusing on using nanofluidics as a tool for DNA analysis. In 2019 he wss awarded the prestigious ERC Consolidator grant.