The unique properties of DNA molecules (self assembling and self recognition) which are essential for its function as carrier of the genetic code have attracted considerable attention in the molecular electronics community. Two potential applications are being discussed: Firstly DNA as template in molecular electronic circuits, and secondly DNA as molecular wire, providing a wiring system. Concerning the latter, a fundamental functioning precondition is the capability to support an electric current. The partially contradictory electrical transport experiments in recent years have presented a challenge to theoreticians. Many factors have turned out to be essential in determining charge propagation in DNA: the quality of the molecule-metal contacts, the specific base-pair sequence, environmental effects, and structural fluctuations, among others.
Structural fluctuations, mediated by the environment and internal vibrational excitations can be a source of dissipation and decoherence for propagating charges and thus dramatically affect the transport properties of the molecule.
Some of our main research topics include the real-time description of the charge migration properties in organic systems, dynamical and electronic properties of biomolecular systems, nano-tribological properties of amino acids on semiconducting surfaces, among others.
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