Nucleic Acid-Barcoding Technologies: Converting DNA Sequencing into a Broad-Spectrum Molecular Counter

Glen Liszczak, Tom W. Muir

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The emergence of high-throughput DNA sequencing technologies sparked a revolution in the field of genomics that has rippled into many branches of the life and physical sciences. The remarkable sensitivity, specificity, throughput, and multiplexing capacity that are inherent to parallel DNA sequencing have since motivated its use as a broad-spectrum molecular counter. A key aspect of extrapolating DNA sequencing to non-traditional applications is the need to append nucleic-acid barcodes to entities of interest. In this review, we describe the chemical and biochemical approaches that have enabled nucleic-acid barcoding of proteinaceous and non-proteinaceous materials and provide examples of downstream technologies that have been made possible by DNA-encoded molecules. As commercially available high-throughput sequencers were first released less than 15 years ago, we believe related applications will continue to mature and close by proposing new frontiers to support this assertion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4144-4162
Number of pages19
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Issue number13
StatePublished - Mar 22 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Catalysis


  • chemical biology
  • drug discovery
  • high-throughput biochemistry
  • nucleic-acid chemistry
  • protein chemistry


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