Nadrian C. Seeman (1945 – 2021)

  • Author: ChemistryViews
  • Published Date: 18 November 2021
  • Copyright: Wiley-VCH GmbH
thumbnail image: Nadrian C. Seeman (1945 – 2021)

Professor Nadrian Seeman, New York University, NY, USA, passed away on November 16, 2021. He founded and developed the field of DNA nanotechnology. DNA nanotechnology involves the design and construction of nanostructures from nucleic acids, i.e., DNA is used as a "building material" for nanostructures. The method relies on base pairing: The DNA used is designed in such a way that complementary base sequences bind together in specific places and connect DNA strands. Thus, the DNA selectively assembles to form the target nanostructures.

Seeman built, for example, nanocubes, nanotubes, polyhedra, two- and three-dimensional lattices, and other structures using DNA strands. The approach has also been used to build nanorobots and other machines, as well as knotted DNA molecules, and has applications in DNA computing.


Nadrian Charles "Ned" Seeman was born in Chicago, IL, USA, on Dezember 16, 1945. He studied biochemistry at the University of Chicago and received his Ph.D. in biochemistry and X-ray crystallography from the University of Pittsburgh, PA, USA, in 1970. He was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Columbia University, New York, NY, USA, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA, USA. Seeman then joined the faculty at the State University of New York at Albany, USA, and in 1988, he became Professor of Chemistry at New York University.

Nadrian Seeman has received numerous awards, including the 1995 Feynman Prize in Nanotechnology, the 2010 Kavli Prize in Nanoscience, and the 2016 Benjamin Franklin Medal from the Franklin Institute. In 2017, he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He also was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a Member of the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters.

Selected Publications


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