Studying DNA strand displacement & random pools in emulsion droplets

Toehold-mediated strand displacement (TMSD) is a key mechanism in DNA nanotechnology, with applications in molecular devices, biosensors, and DNA computing. In this study we explored TMSD kinetics in water-in-oil emulsion droplets using a droplet microfluidic 'stopped flow' set-up, revealing that while average droplet kinetics match bulk behavior, there is significant variability between droplets, influenced by both the encapsulation process, but also by reactions with a random pool background.

T. Mayer, L. Givelet, F. C. Simmel, Micro-compartmentalized strand displacement reactions with a random pool background, Interface Focus 13: 20230011.