Adleman-ScAm94

It is these machines stolen from the cell that make

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Unformatted text preview: aculous molecular machines such as DNA polymerase. Fortunately, three or four billion years of evolution have resulted in cells that are full of wondrous little machines. It is these machines, stolen from the cell, that make modern biotechnology possible. But a molecular machine that would play chess has apparently never evolved. So if I were to build a DNA computer that could do something interesting, I would have to do it with the tools that were at hand. These tools were essentially the following: 1. Watson-Crick pairing. As stated earlier, every strand of DNA has its Watson-Crick complement. As it happens, if a molecule of DNA in solution meets its Watson-Crick complement, then the two strands will anneal—that is, twist around each other to form the famous double helix. The strands are not covalently bound but are held together by weak forces such as hydrogen bonds. If a molecule of DNA in solution meets a DNA molecule to which it is not complementary (and has no long stretches of complementarity), then the two molecules will not anneal. 2. P...
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This note was uploaded on 11/28/2011 for the course COMP 790 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at UNC.

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