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Porous silicon-based nanostructured microparticles as degradable supports for solid-phase synthesis and release of oligonucleotides

Steven J P McInnes12 and Nicolas H Voelcker2*

Author Affiliations

1 School of Chemical and Physical Sciences, Flinders University, Bedford Park, Adelaide, South Australia, 5042, Australia

2 Mawson Institute, University of South Australia, Mawson Lakes, Adelaide, South Australia, 5095, Australia

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2012, 7:385  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-7-385

Published: 12 July 2012


We describe the preparation of several types of porous silicon (pSi) microparticles as supports for the solid-phase synthesis of oligonucleotides. The first of these supports facilitates oligonucleotide release from the nanostructured support during the oligonucleotide deprotection step, while the second type of support is able to withstand the cleavage and deprotection of the oligonucleotides post synthesis and subsequently dissolve at physiological conditions (pH = 7.4, 37°C), slowly releasing the oligonucleotides. Our approach involves the fabrication of pSi microparticles and their functionalisation via hydrosilylation reactions to generate a dimethoxytrityl-protected alcohol on the pSi surface as an initiation point for the synthesis of short oligonucleotides.

Porous silicon; Solid-phase DNA synthesis; Microparticles