Dendrimer probes from Genisphere
Genisphere claims that use of its 3DNA Probe 100 or 3DNA Probe 1000 systems with a standard oligonucleotide probe amplifies the signal of any common detection method by 100- or 1,000-fold, respectively. These systems effect this amplification by employing a "dendrimer" to construct a labeled-oligonucleotide-DNA complex during the labeling reaction.

Dendrimers are large DNA matrices that have multiple single-stranded DNA ends. A dendrimer monomer consists of two strands of DNA that have complementary sequences in the middle and noncomplementary sequences on each end. Hybridization of these two strands results in a molecule that has four single-stranded DNA "arms" and a double-stranded "waist." What makes the dendrimer molecule interesting is that repeated hybridizations act to "hook" monomers together because the complementary single-stranded arms on the dendrimers anneal with each other. Thus, four additional dendrimers can attach to one monomer (one on each arm). The resulting complex has...

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