The Nanofluidic Analysis of Chromatin

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dc.contributor.advisor Dr. Karen Daniels, Committee Co-Chair en_US
dc.contributor.advisor Dr. Robert Riehn, Committee Chair en_US
dc.contributor.advisor Dr. Keith Weninger, Committee Co-Chair en_US Streng, Diana Elisabeth en_US 2010-04-02T17:53:52Z 2010-04-02T17:53:52Z 2009-07-16 en_US
dc.identifier.other etd-03272009-153900 en_US
dc.description.abstract Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is the carrier of all genetic information within a cell. Within eukariotic cells DNA is efficiently packed into chromatin through the formation of a complex of DNA and histone proteins. This complex is called chromatin. Because of the formation of chromatin, DNA is extraordinarily condensed in eukariotic cells. This condensation leads to a very limited resolution of optical techniques that investigate the structure and function of DNA by attaching fluorescent markers. It would thus be of considerable utility to develop a method for stretching chromatin to a predictable extension, so that a direct relationship between basepair number and spatial location is obtain. Such methods exist for bare DNA, but not chromatin. In this dissertation I investigate methods for stretching chromatin using surface and nanofluidic stretching. In the former, chromatin is electrostatically attached to a positively charged surface. In the latter, chromatin is confined to channels about 100 nm in diameter, and hundred of microns long. I find that nanofluidic stretching leads to a more homogeneous stretching of chromatin when compared to surface stretching. Physical models were evaluated for the description of the stretching process. I find that the classical worm-like chain model yield qualitatively correct predictions, but a quantitative treatment is limited by the knowledge about the mechanics of chromatin. My results indicate that nanofluidic stretching of chromatin may become useful for future studies that aim to directly image epigenetic modifications on chromatin moelcules. en_US
dc.rights I hereby certify that, if appropriate, I have obtained and attached hereto a written permission statement from the owner(s) of each third party copyrighted matter to be included in my thesis, dis sertation, or project report, allowing distribution as specified below. I certify that the version I submitted is the same as that approved by my advisory committee. I hereby grant to NC State University or its agents the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible, under the conditions specified below, my thesis, dissertation, or project report in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. I retain all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis, dissertation or project report. I also retain the right to use in future works (such as articles or books) all or part of this thesis, dissertation, or project report. en_US
dc.subject DNA en_US
dc.subject nanochannels en_US
dc.subject chromatin en_US
dc.title The Nanofluidic Analysis of Chromatin en_US MS en_US thesis en_US Physics en_US

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