DNA Wires Can Carry Electric Current!
DNA as we know, is the most powerful source of information storage device in human existence. With this powerful features, there is no wonder, that scientists would like to have something as powerful as our DNA also in computing and electronics.
Computers have gone a long way since they were first created. From huge, big box to Smartphones in our pockets. But they can only go so far, because there has to be a minimum space between transistors in order to prevent interference. That means, that we cannot design smaller processors, that are around today.
DNA could be solution to go smaller. It sounds almost impossible – DNA as a part of the computer. But scientists were ready to face the challenge with using it in the field of “molecular electronics“, or the use of molecules in the production of electronic components. It might not be that hard to design and fabricate DNA-based molecules, but if they transport significant electrical current through them has proved to be extremely difficult.
An international team of researchers, lead by scientists from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, made now significant breakthrough that represents a giant step forward in the development of DNA-based electrical circuits. As published in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, they made their DNA-based wired by absorbing four DNA strands onto mica substrate. After that, they were able to accurately and reproducibly measure the currents flowing through the molecules, which ranged from tens of picoamperes to over 100pA.
The head scientist, Prof. Danny Porath said in an official news release:
“This research paves the way for implementing DNA based programmable circuits for molecular electronics, which could lead to a new generation of computer circuits that can be more sophisticated, cheaper and simpler to make.”
This however does not mean, that the entire study was finished. There are still some obstacles, that team has to overcome, but it is definitely the right way in the field of molecular electronics.
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