X

This website uses cookies.

This website uses cookies to improve user experience. By using our website you consent to all cookies in accordance with our Cookie Policy.

I agree
Learn More
Great Geek Gifts in the Technabob Shop!Get Technabob Daily: Join our Mailing List! | Follow Us: Facebook | Twitter
Awesomer Media Sites: THE AWESOMER | MIGHTYMEGA | 95OCTANE
subscribe to our rss feedsubscribe via e-mailfollow technabob on twittertechnabob facebook fan pageGoogle+follow us in feedly
Follow Us:

Harvard Researchers Make Smileys with DNA

by Shane McGlaun
Advertisement

Scientists from Harvard University have been able to coax DNA into assembling themselves into numbers, letters, symbols, Chinese characters, and even emoticons such as the ubiquitous smiley. These tiny strands of DNA measure billionths of a meter long and represent the next stage in “DNA origami.”

dna_font_smileys

DNA is usually arranged into a double helix, which looks like a ladder that is twisted. Researchers have “unzipped” the ladder and then cut it lengthwise. The team used short lengths of DNA each having 42 rungs that interlock with complementary stretches of the molecule to bend themselves into specific shapes.

The scientists were able to create 107 different designs including smiley faces and other shapes, including one that appears to be in the shape of a man and one that looks like an army tank (or maybe it’s a duck.) Each character measures just 64 nanometers by 103 nanometers, and has a total of 310 available pixels.

Coaxing DNA strands to take on specific shapes isn’t simply for fun and games. The scientists say that being able to create specific shapes could allow DNA to be used as a framework for at the molecular scale for building medications and more.

[via ABC]




Comments are closed for posts older than 90 days.

Recent Posts

Darth Vader Pen Holder: The Pen is Mightier than the Lightsaber

Darth Vader Pen Holder: The Pen is Mightier than the Lightsaber

Photoshop Brush Size & Eraser USB Controller: BrushKnob

Photoshop Brush Size & Eraser USB Controller: BrushKnob

Gigantic Stick Bug is 2-Feet of Nope

Gigantic Stick Bug is 2-Feet of Nope

Fan Made Bioshock Rapture Records Bin: Ryan\

Fan Made Bioshock Rapture Records Bin: Ryan's Songbin

Hands-on: HP Pavilion 12 x2 Detachable PC/Tablet Combo

Hands-on: HP Pavilion 12 x2 Detachable PC/Tablet Combo

More from Awesomer Media...

The Awesomer Logo MightyMega Logo 95octane Logo