Hole transport in DNA hairpins via base mismatches and strand crossings: Efficiency and dynamics

Arun K. Thazhathveetil, Michelle A. Harris, Ryan M. Young, Michael R. Wasielewski*, Frederick D. Lewis

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The efficiency and dynamics of hole transport via base mismatches and strand crossings have been determined for 10 DNA hairpins by means of femtosecond transient absorption spectroscopy. The hairpins possess a stilbenedicarboxamide hole donor and stilbenediether hole acceptor separated by seven base pairs. Hole transport occurs via an intra- or interstrand A3G4 diblock purine sequence that contains either a single base pair mismatch or strand crossing. Pyrimidine-pyrimidine mismatches (TT or CC) effectively block intrastrand hole transport; whereas purine-purine mismatches (AA or GG) permit efficient interstrand hole transport. Purine-to-purine intrastrand hole transport between adjacent matched base pairs is also moderately efficient (AG > AA > GG). Based upon these results AA mismatches are being employed in the design of three-way junctions for incorporation in prototype charge splitting and charge combining devices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)160-164
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Photochemistry and Photobiology A: Chemistry
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016


  • Base-pair mismatch
  • DNA
  • Donor-acceptor systems
  • Hole transport
  • Transient absorption spectroscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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