Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Tiny computing machine fueled by DNA

25.02.2003


The device was awarded the Guinness World Record for "smallest biological computing device"



Fifty years after the discovery of the structure of DNA, a new use has been found for this celebrated molecule: fuel for molecular computation systems. The research, conducted by scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science, will appear in this week’s issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA (PNAS).

Whether plugged in or battery powered, computers need energy. Around a year ago, Prof. Ehud Shapiro of the Weizmann Institute made international headlines for devising a programmable molecular computing machine composed of enzymes and DNA molecules. Now his team has made the device uniquely frugal: the single DNA molecule that provides the computer with the input data also provides all the necessary fuel.


The source of fuel of the earlier device was a molecule called ATP, the standard energy currency of all life forms. The redesigned device processes its DNA input molecule using only spontaneous, energy releasing operations. It breaks two bonds in the DNA input molecule, releasing the energy stored in these bonds as heat. This process generates sufficient energy to carry out computations to completion without any external source of energy.

A spoonful (5 milliliters) of "computer soup" can contain 15,000 trillion such computers, together performing 330 trillion operations per second with 99.9% accuracy per step. These computers need very little energy (all supplied, as mentioned, by the input molecule) and together release less than 25 millionths of a watt as heat.

The device was recently awarded the Guinness World Record for "smallest biological computing device."


###
The study was carried out by Yaakov Benenson, Dr. Rivka Adar, Dr. Tamar Paz-Elizur, Prof. Zvi Livneh and Prof. Ehud Shapiro of the Institute’s Biological Chemistry Department and the Computer Science and Applied Mathematics Department.

Prof. Ehud Shapiro’s research is supported by the Dolfi and Lola Ebner Center for Biomedical Research, Yad Hanadiv, the Robert Rees Fund for Applied Research and the Samuel R. Dweck Foundation.

Alex Smith | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.weizmann.ac.il/udi
http://www.weizmann.ac.il/

More articles from Power and Electrical Engineering:

nachricht Linear potentiometer LRW2/3 - Maximum precision with many measuring points
17.05.2017 | WayCon Positionsmesstechnik GmbH

nachricht First flat lens for immersion microscope provides alternative to centuries-old technique
17.05.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

All articles from Power and Electrical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can the immune system be boosted against Staphylococcus aureus by delivery of messenger RNA?

Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.

Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a bacterium that colonizes by far more than half of the skin and the mucosa of adults, usually without causing infections....

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

How herpesviruses win the footrace against the immune system

26.05.2017 | Life Sciences

Water forms 'spine of hydration' around DNA, group finds

26.05.2017 | Life Sciences

First Juno science results supported by University of Leicester's Jupiter 'forecast'

26.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>