Microscale swimmer creates a stir

Posted on Friday, March 27th, 2009 in News| Share this article
microswimmerResearch combining the theoretical expertise of Polymer Centre member, Prof. Ramin Golestanian, and a team at the University of Barcelona has attracted the attention of both the scientific and national media recently.

The work involved the coupling of two iron-doped polystyrene beads using strands of DNA.  The differing sizes of the two beads resulted in the formation of an anisotropic, paramagnetic rotor, which in the presence of a precessing magnetic field, can propel themselves when close to the inteface between a glass surface and water.  It is thought that the “swimmers” may have applications in the targetted delivery of chemicals in lab-on-chip and other small scale applications.

The research published in Journal of Physical Chemistry B has attracted coverage from both Channel4 and The Daily Telegraph as well as Nature Chemistry and New Scientist.

Contact Prof. Ramin Golestanian