Dr. Jürgen Fuhrmann
Dr. Clemens Guhlke
Sensing with nanopores is a promising new technology to analyze macromolecules like DNA strands by low cost/high speed measurements. The sensing device is constructed based on a nanopore embedded into a membrane which separates two electrodes. The system is filled with an electrolyte containing macromolecules to be analyzed. An electric potential is applied to the electrodes and induces an ionic current through the pore. Sensing is based on the observation that this ionic current is influenced by the geometrical configurations of the pore and of the macromolecules positioned within the pore. Under controlled movement of the macromolecule through the pore a characteristic time dependent current signal is generated, which is correlated to the structure of the pore and the macromolecule. Therefore nanopores can be used to count and even to characterize macromolecules in an electrolytic solution.