Friday, June 05, 2009

Gene Expression: Origami at the Molecular Level

In an Effort to Make Assembly Lines of the Future, Researchers Fold DNA Into Shapes That Can Copy Themselves
By ROBERT LEE HOTZ, The New York Times

Combining art, chemistry and computer science, bioengineers are taking origami into a new dimension, where creations are a thousand times smaller than the diameter of a human hair and materials are molecules that not only fold themselves but make endless copies of the result.
View Slideshow - Paul W. K. Rothemund, Nature

Caltech researcher Paul Rothemund and his colleagues made a gallery of attention-getting DNA devices, like this smiley face so small it can only be seen with an electron microscope.
In dozens of laboratories, these researchers are folding DNA into complex shapes, experimenting with molecular origami like apprentices learning to pleat their first paper swans.

Source - WSJ:


The creative question here is, "Can hydrocarbon molecules someday be reworked to burn more efficiently and perhaps even reconstruct toxic effluents that result from the combusion process?"

Richard L. Wottrich

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You cannot fold over hydrocarbons can you? They are not oprganic?