Shea_Fett_Riedel_Parhi_Writing_and_Compiling_code_into_Biochemistry_001

Shea_Fett_Riedel_Parhi_Writing_and_Compiling_code_into_Biochemistry_001

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Unformatted text preview: 1 WRITING AND COMPILING CODE INTO BIOCHEMISTRY * ADAM SHEA, BRIAN FETT, MARC D. RIEDEL and KESHAB PARHI Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering University of Minnesota Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455 Email: { shea0097, fett, mriedel, parhi } @umn.edu This paper presents a methodology for translating iterative arithmetic computation, specified as high-level programming constructs, into biochemical reactions. From an input/output specification, we generate biochemical reactions that produce output quantities of proteins as a function of input quantities performing operations such as addition, subtraction, and scalar multiplication. Iterative constructs such as “while” loops and “for” loops are implemented by transferring quantities between protein types, based on a clocking mechanism. Synthesis first is performed at a conceptual level, in terms of abstract biochemical reactions – a task analogous to high-level program compilation. Then the results are mapped onto specific biochemical reactions selected from libraries – a task analogous to machine language compilation. We demonstrate our approach through the compilation of a variety of standard iterative functions: multiplication, exponentiation, discrete logarithms, raising to a power, and linear transforms on time series. The designs are validated through transient stochastic simulation of the chemical kinetics. We are exploring DNA-based computation via strand displacement as a possible experimental chassis. 1. Introduction Recent accomplishments in synthetic biology portend of a coming revolution. From Salmonella that secretes spider silk proteins, 1 to yeast that degrades biomass into ethanol, 2 to E. coli that produces antimalarial drugs, 3 the potential impacts are far-reaching. The scope of the field is, in fact, broader. The J. Craig Venter Institute’s team has made significant progress toward the goal of artificial life: a living bacterial cell with fully synthetic DNA. 4,5 In engineering terms, the objective is to assemble a machine (a synthetic bacterium) in which the functionality of all the parts (the genes, the proteins that they code for, and how these interact biochemically) are understood. If the machine works, this vindicates the scientific understanding; if it doesn’t – and surely it won’t at first – then new understanding can be achieved by examining where and how it breaks. Of course, with a working blueprint for a synthetic machine, new functionality can be engineered robustly and e ff ectively. The set of constitutive parts that can be used for genetic manipulation in synthetic systems is vast. Comprehensive repositories of genetic data have been assembled – some public, some commercial – cataloging genes, their DNA sequences, and their products. A concerted e ff ort has been made to assemble repositories of standardized and interoperable parts for synthetic applications. The platforms used will depend on the application, but the technology for synthesizing DNA is becoming routine: firms have started o...
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Shea_Fett_Riedel_Parhi_Writing_and_Compiling_code_into_Biochemistry_001

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