Unformatted text preview: seemed unlikely that any existed for other important roles, such as factoring numbers. This brings up an important fact about biotechnologists: we are a community of thieves. We steal from the cell. We are a long way from being able Scientific American August 1998 55 Copyright 1998 Scientific American, Inc. TOMO NARASHIMA Hamiltonian Path Problem C onsider a map of cities connected by certain nonstop flights (top right). For instance, in the example shown here, it is possible to travel directly from Boston to Detroit but not vice versa. The goal is to determine whether a path exists that will commence at the start city (Atlanta), finish at the end city (Detroit) and pass through each of the remaining cities exactly once. In DNA computation, each city is assigned a DNA sequence (ACTTGCAG for Atlanta) that can be thought of as a first name (ACTT) followed by a last name (GCAG). DNA flight numbers can then be defined by concatenating the last name of the city of origin with the first name of the city of destination (bottom right). The complem...
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- Fall '08
- DNA, Hamiltonian path, DNA computer