Sign In

Communications of the ACM

ACM TechNews

The Next Computer: Your Genes

View as: Print Mobile App Share:

Courtesy of

Nanyang Technical University researchers are developing a new form of computing, based on DNA strands, which could be used to solve complex problems. The researchers say that DNA-based computing could be useful for strategic assignment problems, massive parallel problems, combinatorial problems, and artificial intelligence-solving problems.

Unlike silicon-based binary systems, DNA-based computing consists of A, G, C, and T, which gives the technology considerably greater range, says Nanyang professor Jian-Jun Shu. "DNA-based computing has the potential to deal with fuzzy data, going beyond digital data," Shu says.

The researchers found that they could fuse strands together, cut them, and carry out other operations that would impact the DNA's computing ability. In this model, DNA molecules function as information storage tools that can be used for computational operations. "We can join strands together, creating an addition operation, or we can divide by making the DNA smaller by denaturization," Shu says. Among the challenges of DNA-based computing are minimizing the need for human manipulation and displaying the results.

View Full Article

Abstracts Copyright © 2011 Information Inc. External Link, Bethesda, Maryland, USA 


No entries found

Sign In for Full Access
» Forgot Password? » Create an ACM Web Account