ITHACA, N.Y. -- Cornell University researchers have demonstrated a novel method of separating DNA molecules by length. The technique might eventually be used to create chips or other microscopic devices to automate and speed up gene sequencing and DNA fingerprinting. The method, which uses a previously discovered entropic recoil force, has better resolution -- that is, better ability to distinguish different lengths -- than others tried so far, the researchers say. They separated DNA strands of two different lengths, using their own nanofabricated device, and demonstrated that modifications would make it possible to separate strands of many different lengths.
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