Recent Papers

Schweikhard, V., Meng, C., Murakami, K., Kaplan, C., Kornberg, R.D., Block, S.M. Transcription factors TFIIF and TFIIS promote transcript elongation by RNA polymerase II by synergistic and independent mechanisms. PNAS early edition (2014) (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Zhou, J., Schweikhard, V., Block, S.M. Single-molecule studies of RNAPII elongation. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 1829: 29-38 (2013) (Full Text PDF.)
Koslover, D.J., Fazal, F.M., Mooney, R.A., Landick, R., Block, S.M. Binding and Translocation of Termination Factor Rho Studied at the Single-Molecule Level.Journal of Molecular Biology 423: 664-676 (2012) (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Frieda, K.L., Block, S.M. Direct Observation of Cotranscriptional Folding in an Adenine Riboswitch. Science 338: 397-400 (2012) (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Larson, M.H., Zhou, J., Kaplan, C.D., Palangat, M., Kornberg, R.D., Landick, R., Block, S.M. Trigger loop dynamics mediate the balance between the transcriptional fidelity and speed of RNA polymerase II. PNAS 109:6555-6560 (2012) (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Palangat, M., Larson, M.H., Hu, X., Gnatt, A., Block, S.M., Landick, R. Efficient reconstitution of transcriptionelongation complexes for single-molecule studies of eukaryotic RNA polymerase II. Transcription 3:3 (2012) (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Anthony, P.C., Sim, A.Y.L., Chu, V.B., Doniach, S., Block, S.M., Herschlag, D. Electrostatics of nucleic acid folding under conformational constraint. JACS 134: 4607-4614 (2012) (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Anthony, P.C., Perez, C.F., García-García, C., Block, S.M. Folding energy landscape of the thiamine pyrophosphate riboswitch aptamer. PNAS 109: 1485-1489 (2012) (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Zhou, J., Ha, K.S., La Porta, A., Landick, R., Block, S.M. Applied force provides insight into transcriptional pausing and its modulation by transcription factor NusA. Molecular Cell 44: 635-646 (2011) (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Fazal, F.M., Block, S.M. Optical tweezers study life under tension. Nature Photonics 5: 318-321 (2011). (Full Text PDF)
Clancy, B.E., Behnke-Parks, W.M., Andreasson, J.O., Rosenfeld, S.S., Block, S.M. A universal pathway for kinesin stepping. Nature Structural & Molecular Biology 18: 1020-1027 (2011). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Larson, M.H., Landick, R., Block, S.M. Single-molecule studies of RNA polymerase: one singular sensation, every little step it takes. Molecular Cell 41: 249-262 (2011). (Full Text PDF)
Gutiérrez-Medina, B., Block, S.M. Visualizing individual microtubules by bright field microscopy, American Journal of Physics 78. 1152-1159 (2010). (Full Text PDF)
Gutiérrez-Medina, B., Andreasson, J.O., Greenleaf, W.J., La Porta, A., Block, S.M. An optical apparatus for rotation and trapping. Methods in Enzymology 475: 377-404 (2010). (Full Text PDF)
Herbert, K.M., Zhou, J., Mooney, R.A., La Porta, A., Landick, R., Block, S.M. E. coli NusG inhibits backtracking and accelerates pause-free transcription by promoting forward translocation of RNA polymerase. Journal of Molecular Biology 399: 17-30 (2010). (Full Text PDF)
Gutiérrez-Medina, B., Fehr, A.N., Block, S.M. Direct measurements of kinesin torsional properties reveal flexible domains and occasional stalk reversals during stepping. PNAS 106: 17007-17012 (2009). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Valentine, M.T., Block, S.M. Force and premature binding of ADP can regulate the processivity of individual Eg5 dimers. Biophysical Journal 97: 1671-1677 (2009). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Fehr, A.N., Gutiérrez-Medina, B., Asbury, C.L., Block, S.M. On the origin of kinesin limping. Biophysical Journal 97: 1663-1670 (2009). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
Guydosh, N.R., Block, S.M. Direct observation of the binding state of the kinesin head to the microtubule. Nature 461: 125-128 (2009). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)


Papers prior to 2009
  1. Woodside M.T., García-García, C., Block, S.M. Folding and unfolding single RNA molecules under tension. Current Opinion in Chemical Biology 12: 640-646 (2008). (Full Text PDF)
  2. Herbert, K.M., Greenleaf, W.J., Block, S.M. Single-molecule studies of RNA polymerase: motoring along. Annual Review of Biochemistry 77: 149-176 (2008). (Full Text PDF)
  3. Larson, M. H., Greenleaf, W.J., Landick, R., Block, S.M. Applied force reveals mechanisticand energetic details of transcription termination. Cell 132: 971-982 (2008). (Full Text PDF) (Click here for Cell Commentary).
  4. Greenleaf, W.J., Frieda, K.L., Foster, D.A.N., Woodside, M.T., Block, S.M. Direct Observation of Hierarchical Folding in Single Riboswitch Aptamers. Science 319: 630-633 (2008). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
  5. Valentine, M.T., Guydosh, N.R., Gutiérrez-Medina, B., Fehr, A.N., Andreasson, J.O., Block, S.M. Precision steering of an optical trap by electro-optic deflection. Optics Letters 33: 599-601 (2008). (Full Text PDF)
  6. Fehr, A.N., Asbury, C.L., Block, S.M. Kinesin Steps Do Not Alternate in Size. Biophysical Journal: Biophysical Letters 94: L20-L22 (2008). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
  7. Block, S.M. Kinesin motor mechanics: Binding, stepping, tracking, gating, and limping. Biophysical Journal 92: 2986-2995 (2007). (Full Text PDF)
  8. Guydosh,N.R., Block, S.M. Not so lame after all: Kinesin still walks with a hobbled head. The Journal of General Physiology 130: 441-444 (2007). (Full Text PDF)
  9. Block, S.M., Larson, M.H., Greenleaf, W.J., Herbert, K.M., Guydosh, N.R., Anthony, P.C. Molecule by molecule, the physics and chemistry of life: SMB 2007. Nature Chemical Biology 3: 193-197 (2007). (Full Text PDF)
  10. Greenleaf, W.J., Woodside, M.T., Block, S.M. High-Resolution, single-molecule measurements of biomolecular motion. Annual Review of Biophysics Biomolecular Structure 36: 171-190 (2007). (Full Text PDF)
  11. Valentine, M.T., Fordyce, P.F., Block, S.M. Eg5 steps it up! Cell Division 1: 31 (2006) (Full Text PDF)
  12. Woodside, M.T., Anthony, P.C., Behnke-Parks, W.M., Larizadeh, K., Herschlag, D., Block, S.M.
    Direct measurement of the full, sequence-dependent folding landscape of a nucleic acid. Science 314: 1001-1004 (2006). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
  13. Greenleaf, W.J., Block, S.M. Single-molecule, motion-based DNA sequencing using RNA polymerase. Science 313: 801 (2006). (Full Text PDF. Cick here for Supplemental Materials.)
  14. Dalal, R.V., Larson, M.H., Neuman, K.C., Gelles, J., Landick, R., Block, S.M. Pulling on the nascent RNA during transcription does not alter kinetics of elongation or ubiquitous pausing. Molecular Cell 23: 231-239 (2006). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
  15. Herbert, K.M., La Porta, A., Wong, B.J., Mooney, R.A., Neuman, K.C., Landick, R., Block, S.M. Sequence-resolved detection of pausing by single RNA polymerase molecules. Cell 125: 1084-1094 (2006). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
  16. Valentine, M.T., Fordyce, P.M., Krzysiak, T.C., Gilbert, S.P., Block, S.M. Individual dimers of the mitotic kinesin motor Eg5 step processively and support substantial loads in vitro. Nature Cell Biology 8:470-477 (2006). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
  17. Guydosh, N.R., Block, S.M. Backsteps induced by nucelotide analogs suggest the front head of kinesin is gated by strain. PNAS 103:8054-8059 (2006). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
  18. Woodside, M.T., Behnke-Parks, W.M., Larizadeh, K., Travers, K., Hershlag, D., Block, S.M. Nanomechanical measurements of the sequence-dependent folding landscapes of single nucleic acid hairpins. PNAS 103:6190-6195 (2006). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
  19. Abbondanzieri, E.A., Greenleaf, W.J., Shaevitz, J.W., Landick, R., Block, S.M. Direct observation of base-pair stepping by RNA polymerase. Nature 438:460-465 (2005). (Full Text PDF. Click here for Supplemental Materials.)
  20. Greenleaf, W.J., Woodside, M.T., Abbondanzieri, E.A., Block S.M. Passive all-optical force clamp for high-resolution laser trapping. Physical Review Letters 95:218102 (2005). (Full Text PDF)
  21. Abbondanzieri, E.A., Shaevitz, J.W., Block S.M. Picocalorimetry of transcription by RNA polymerase. Biophysical Journal-Biophysical Letters 89: L61-L63 (2005). (Full Text PDF)
  22. Neuman, K.C., Abbondanzieri, E.A., and Block, S.M. Measurement of the effective focal shift in an optical trap. Optics Lett. 30: 1318-1320 (2005). (Full Text PDF)
  23. Shaevitz, J.W., Block, S.M. and Schnitzer, M.J. Statistical kinetics of macromolecular dynamics. Biophysical Journal 89: 2277-2285 (2005). (Full Text PDF)
  24. Lang, M.J., Fordyce, P.M., Engh, A.M, Neuman, K.C., Block, S.M. Simultaneous, coincident optical trapping and single molecule fluorescence. Nature Methods 1(2):133-139 (2004) (Full Text PDF)
  25. Neuman, Keir and Block, S.M. Optical trapping review. Review of Scientific Instruments Vol. 75, no.9, pp 2787-2809 (2004) (Full Text PDF)
  26. Perkins, T.T., Li, H.W., Dalal, R.V., Gelles, J., Block, S.M. Forward and reverse motion of single RecBCD molecules on DNA. Biophys J. 86(3):1640-8 (2004). (Full Text PDF)
  27. Asbury, C.L., Fehr, A.N., Block, S.M. Kinesin Moves by an Asymmetric Hand-Over-Hand Mechanism. Science 302:2130. (2003) (Full Text PDF).
  28. Shaevitz, J.W., Abbondanzieri, E.A., Landick, R., Block, S.M. Backtracking by single RNA polymerase molecules observed at near-base-pair resolution. Nature 426: 684 - 687 (2003) (Full Text PDF).
  29. Neuman, K.C., Abbondanzieri, E.A., Landick, R., Gelles, J., Block, S.M. Ubiquitous Transcriptional Pausing Is Independent of RNA Polymerase Backtracking. Cell 115:347-447 (2003) (Full Text PDF).
  30. Perkins T.T., Dalal R.V., Mitsis P.G., Block S.M. Sequence-dependent pausing of single lambda exonuclease molecules. Science 301:1914. (2003) (Full Text PDF).
  31. Rosenfeld S.S., Fordyce P.M., Jeffereson G.M., King P.H., Block S.M. Stepping and stretching: How kinesin uses internal strain to walk processively. J. Biol. Chem. 278:18550-18556 (2003) (Full Text PDF).
  32. Lang, M.J., Fordyce, P.M. and Block, S.M. Combined optical tweezers and single-molecule fluorescence. J. Biology 2:6 (2003) (Full Text PDF).
  33. Block, S.M., Asbury, C.L., Shaevitz, J.W., Lang, M.J. Probing the kinesin reaction cycle with a 2D optical force clamp. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 100:2351-2356 (2003) (Full Text PDF).
  34. Lang. M.J. and Block, S.M. Resource Letter: LBOT-1: Laser-based optical tweezers. Am. J. Phys. 71 (2003) (Full Text PDF).
  35. Lang, M.J., Asbury, C.L., Shaevitz, J.W., Block, S.M. An Automated Two-Dimensional Optical Force Clamp for Single Molecule Studies. Biophys. J. 83 (2002) (Full Text PDF)
  36. Block, S.M. A not-so-cheap stunt. Science 297:769 (2002) (Full Text PDF).
  37. Gross, S.P., Welte, M.A., Block, S.M. and E.F. Wieschaus. Coordination of opposite-polarity microtubule motors. J. Cell Biol. 156: 715-724 (2002) (Full Text PDF).
  38. Davis, L.J., Odde, D.J., Block, S.M. and Gross, S.P. The importance of lattice defects in katanin-mediated microtubule severing in vitro. Biophys. J. 82: 2916-2927 (2002) (Full Text PDF)
  39. Block, S.M. The Growing Threat of Biological Weapons. American Scientist 89: 2-11 (2001) (Full Text PDF).
  40. Schnitzer, M.J., Visscher, K. and Block, S.M.  Mechanism of force production by single kinesin motors. Nature Cell Biology 2 (2000) (Full Text PDF).
  41. Baumann, C.G., Bloomfield, V.A., Smith, S.B., Bustamante, C., Wang, M.D. and Block, S.M.  Stretching of single collapsed DNA molecules.  Biophys. J. 78 (2000) (Full Text PDF).
  42. Gross, S.P., Welte, M.A., Block, S.M. and E.F. Wieschaus.  Regulation of dynein-mediated cargo transport in vivo: a biophysical approach.  J. Cell Biol. 148 (2000) (Full Text PDF).
  43. Neuman, K., Chadd, E.H., Liou, G.F., Bergman, K. and Block, S.M.  Characterization of photodamage to Escherichia coli in optical traps.  Biophys. J. 77: 2656-2863 (1999) (Full Text PDF)
  44. Block, S.M.  Living nightmares:  Biological warfare threats enabled by molecular biology.  In  The New Terror:  Facing the Threat of Biological and Chemical Weapons,  S.D. Drell, A.D. Sofaer, and G.D. Wilson (eds.)  Hoover Institution Press, Stanford, California (1999) (Full Text PDF).
  45. Visscher, K., Schnitzer, M.J. and Block, S.M.  Single kinesin molecules studied with a molecular force clamp. Nature 400: 184-189 (1999) (Full Text PDF)
  46. Bouchiat, C., Wang, M.D., Allemand, J.-F., Strick, T., Block, S.M. and Croquette, V.  Estimating the persistence length of a worm-like chain molecule from force-extension measurements. Biophys. J. 76: 409-413 (1999) (Full text PDF)
  47. Wang, M.D., Schnitzer, M.J., Yin, H., Landick, R., Gelles, J., and Block, S.M.  Force and velocity measured for single molecules of RNA polymerase.  Science 292: 902-907 (1998) (Full Text PDF)
  48. Visscher, K. and Block, S.M.  Versatile optical traps with feedback control.  Meths. Enzymol. 298: 460-489 (1998). (Full text PDF)
  49. Block, S.M.  Kinesin:  What gives?  Cell 93: 5-8 (1998) (Full Text PDF)
  50. Block, S.M.  Leading the procession:  new insights into kinesin motors.  J. Cell Biol. 140: 1281-1284 (1998) (Full Text PDF)
  51. Welte, M.A., Gross, S.P., Postner, M., Block, S.M. and Wieschaus, E.F.  Developmental regulation of vesicle transport in Drosophila embryos:  forces and kinetics. Cell 92: 547-557 (1998) (Full Text PDF)
  52. Luna, E.J., Hitt A.L., Shutt, D., Wessels, D., Soll, D., Jay, P., Hug, C., Elson, E.L., Vesley, A., Downey, G.P., Wang, M., Block, S.M, Sigurdson, W., and Sachs, F.  Role of ponticulin in pseudopod dynamics, cell-cell adhesion, and mechanical stability of an amoeboid membrane skeleton.  Biol. Bull. 194: 345-7 (1998).
  53. Block, S.M.  Constructing optical tweezers.  In Cell Biology:  A Laboratory Manual, D.L. Spector, R. Goldman, L. Leinwand (eds.)  Cold Spring Harbor Press (1998). (Full Text)
  54. Schnitzer, M.J. and Block, S.M.  Kinesin hydrolyses one ATP per 8-nm step. Nature 388: 386-390 (1997) (Full Text PDF)
  55. Block, S.M.  Real engines of creation. Nature 386: 217-219 (1997).
  56. Wang, M.D., Yin, H., Landick, R., Gelles, J., and Block, S.M.  Stretching DNA with optical tweezers. Biophys. J. 72: 1335-1346 (1997). Visscher, K., Gross, S.P., and Block, S.M.  Construction of multiple-beam optical traps with nanometer-level position sensing.  IEEE J. Sel. Top. Quant. Electr. 2: 1066-1076 (1996)
  57. (Full Text PDF) Block, S.M.  Do’s and don’ts of poster presentation. Biophys. J. 71: 3527-3529 (1996) (Full Text PDF)
  58. Block, S.M.  Fifty ways to love your lever:  myosin motors.  Cell 87: 151-157 (1996) (Full Text PDF)
  59. Schnitzer, M.J. and Block, S.M.  Statistical kinetics of processive enzymes.  Cold Spring Harbor Symp. Quant. Biol. 60: 793-802 (1996) (Full Text PDF)
  60. Yin, H., Wang, M.D., Svoboda, K., Landick, R., Block, S.M. and Gelles, J.  Transcription against an applied force. Science 270: 1653-1656 (1995).
  61. Block, S.M.  One small step for myosin.  Nature 378: 132-133 (1995).
  62. Block, S.M.  Motility Assays for Motor Proteins (review).  Quart. Rev. Biol. 70;2: 217-218 (1995).
  63. Block, S.M. and K. Svoboda.  Analysis of high resolution recordings of motor movement.  Biophys. J. 68: 230-241s (1995).
  64. Block, S.M. Nanometers and piconewtons:  the macromolecular mechanics of kinesin.  Trends Cell Biol. 5: 169-175 (1995) (Full Text PDF)
  65. Svoboda, K., Mitra, P. and Block, S.M.  Fluctuation analysis of kinesin movement. Biophys. J. 68: 69s (1995).
  66. Svoboda, K., Mitra, P. and Block, S.M.  Fluctuation analysis of motor protein movement and single enzyme kinetics.  Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 91: 11782-11786 (1994) (Full Text PDF)
  67. Svoboda, K. and Block, S.M.  Optical trapping of metallic Rayleigh particles.  Optics Letts. 19: 930-932 (1994).
  68. Svoboda, K. and Block, S.M.  Force and velocity measured for single kinesin molecules.  Cell 77: 773-784 (1994).
  69. Block, S.M.  Biophysical principles of sensory transduction:  The importance of kTIn Sensory Transduction, pp. 91-117.  N. Elsner and H. Breer (eds.)  Proceedings of the 22nd Göttingen Neurobiology Conference 1994, Vol. 1, Georg Thieme Verlag, Stuttgart (1994).
  70. Svoboda, K. and Block, S.M.  Biological applications of optical forces.  Ann. Rev. Biophys. Biomol. Struct. 23: 247-285 (1994) (Full Text PDF).
  71. Fahrner, K. A., Block, S.M., Krishnaswamy, S., Parkinson, J.S. and Berg, H.C.  A mutant hook-associated protein (HAP3) facilitates torsionally-induced transformations of the flagellar filament of Escherichia coli.  J. Mol. Biol. 238: 173-186 (1994).
  72. Svoboda, K., Schmidt, C.F., Schnapp, B.J., and Block, S.M.  Direct observation of kinesin stepping by optical trapping interferometry.  Nature 365: 721-727 (1993).
  73. Block, S.M.  Making light work with optical tweezers.  Nature 360: 493-495 (1992).
  74. Block, S.M.  Optical tweezers as a tool to study cells and biomolecules.  Science 258: 13, suppl. (1992).
  75. Svoboda, K., Schmidt, C.F., Branton, D. and Block, S.M.  Conformation and elasticity of the isolated red blood cell membrane.  Biophys. J. 63: 784-793 (1992).
  76. Block, S.M.  Biophysical principles of sensory transduction.  In Sensory Transduction.  Chap. 1, pp. 1-17.  D.P. Corey and S. D. Roper (eds.)  Vol. 47, Soc. Gen. Physiol. Series, Rockefeller University Press, New York (1992).
  77. Svoboda, K., Schmidt, C.F., Lei, N., Safinya, C.R., Block, S.M. and Branton, D.  Scattering studies of the isolated red blood cell skeleton, a biological two-dimensional polymer.  Mat. Res. Soc. Symp. Proc. 248: 63-68 (1992).
  78. Schmidt, C.F., Svoboda, K., Lei, N., Safinya, C.R., Block, S.M. and Branton, D.  The isolated human red blood cell skeleton:  an example of a flexible tethered membrane.  In The Structure and Conformation of Amphiphilic Membranes.  R. Lipowsky, D. Richter, and K. Kremer (eds.Springer Proc. Phys. 66: 128-132, Springer-Verlag, Berlin (1992).
  79. Block, S.M.  "E pur si muove! (It moves, nevertheless!, Galileo)".  Trends in Cell Biol. 2: 60-61 (1992).
  80. Charon, N.W., Goldstein, S.F., Block, S.M., Curci, K., Ruby, J.D. and Limberger, R.J.  Morphology and dynamics of protruding spirochete flagella.  J. Bacteriol. 174: 832-840 (1992).
  81. Block, S.M., Blair, D.F. and Berg, H.C.  Compliance of the bacterial polyhooks measured with optical tweezers.  Cytometry 12: 492-496 (1991).
  82. Block, S.M., Fahrner, K.A. and Berg, H.C.  Visualization of bacterial flagella by video-enhanced light microscopy.  J. Bacteriol. 173: 933-936 (1991).
  83. Block, S.M., Goldstein, L.S.B., and Schnapp, B.J.  Bead movement by single kinesin molecules studied with optical tweezers.  Nature 348: 348-352 (1990).
  84. Shepherd, G.M.G., Corey, D.P. and Block, S.M.  Actin cores of hair-cell stereocilia support myosin motility.  Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 87: 8627-8631 (1990).
  85. Schnitzer, M.J., Block, S.M., Berg, H.C. and Purcell, E.M.  Strategies for chemotaxis.  In Biology of the Chemotactic Response.  J.P. Armitage & J.M. Lackie (eds.Symp. Soc. Gen. Biol. 46: 15-34 (1990)
  86. Block, S.M.  Optical tweezers:  a new tool for biophysics.  In Noninvasive Techniques in Cell Biology.  Chapter 15, pp. 375-401.  S. Grinstein & K. Foskett (eds.)  Vol. 9, Modern Cell Biology series.  Wiley-Liss, New York (1990) (Full Text PDF).
  87. Block, S.M., Blair, D.F. and Berg, H.C.  Compliance of bacterial flagella measured with optical tweezers.  Nature 338: 514-518 (1989).
  88. Block, S.M.  Light traps for biology.  Physics Today 40;1: S17-S18 (1989).