An improved surface passivation method for single-molecule studies

Nat Methods. 2014 Dec;11(12):1233-6. doi: 10.1038/nmeth.3143. Epub 2014 Oct 12.


We report a surface passivation method based on dichlorodimethylsilane (DDS)-Tween-20 for in vitro single-molecule studies, which, under the conditions tested here, more efficiently prevented nonspecific binding of biomolecules than the standard poly(ethylene glycol) surface. The DDS-Tween-20 surface was simple and inexpensive to prepare and did not perturb the behavior and activities of tethered biomolecules. It can also be used for single-molecule imaging in the presence of high concentrations of labeled species in solution.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • DNA-Directed DNA Polymerase / metabolism*
  • Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer / methods*
  • Humans
  • Polyethylene Glycols / chemistry*
  • Polyethylene Glycols / metabolism
  • Polysorbates / chemistry*
  • Polysorbates / metabolism
  • Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen / metabolism*
  • Silanes / chemistry*
  • Silanes / metabolism
  • Surface Properties


  • Polysorbates
  • Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen
  • Silanes
  • Polyethylene Glycols
  • dichlorodimethylsilane
  • DNA-Directed DNA Polymerase
  • POLK protein, human