Posted on | October 30, 2007 | No Comments
ABC is reporting that Dr. Paul Rothemund at the California Institute of Technology can make 50 billion smileys, each a thousand times smaller than the diameter of a human hair.
[ ultra paranoid geek mode ON ]
We’ve already seen a patent for music from human DNA. Could this technique result in a patent that restricted our .. nah. While Dr. Rothemund did something rather novel, it is not specific to one person’s DNA. Great! <phew>
[ ultra paranoid geek mode OFF ]
DNA is akin to microscopic Legos, a very versatile tiny building block that plays well with others. Imagine playing with Legos, needing a piece 6 blocks long but only having one 8 pieces long. If you were using DNA, you could cut your 8 piece into a 6 piece.
If you were a biologist, you could turn a protein strand into something that works very much like a transistor with this research. Since this technique is relatively new, I’ll refrain from entering ultra paranoid geek mode again (for now).
From the article (citing ABC ):
In a potent demonstration of his so-called DNA origami technique, Rothemund has created half a dozen shapes, including a five-pointed star, a snowflake, a picture of the double helix and a map of the Americas in which one nanometre represents 120 kilometres.
It’s worth a read, go check it out