The versatility of the DNA inserts will provide a rapidly evolvable material for multiple applications.
Current structure determination technology is labor intensive and haphazard. Guest capture is one key use for ICC bioscaffolds. Any guest molecule that binds the designed crystals tightly and specifically may join the periodic lattice that is visible in the electron density map revealed by XRD. Specific DNA sites can be incorporated in the struts to observe a small molecule, a small protein, or even a third piece of ssDNA. A hypothetical structure of the site-specific capture of a small zinc-finger homeodomain(Fraenkel et. al, J. Mol. Biol. 1998) is shown in cyan.
Along these lines, we can capture an enzyme to do a controlled catalytic reaction or temporarily capture a fluorescent protein for biosensing.
The proposed approach has the possibility to revolutionize structural biology by providing rapid and routine structure determination for any molecule that can bind specific DNA sequences.