DNA Computing in micro-flow reactors

Danny van Noort

Fraunhofer Institute for BioMolecular Information Processing, St. Augustin/Bonn, Germany

2002. 1. 12

DNA computing is the interdisciplinary play between molecular biology, micro-chip technology, optics and evolution theory as to create a computer for computationally intensive problems.  Since the introduction in 1994 by Adleman there is an intensive research on the ability to use DNA molecules as means to do calculations, simulating the digital information processing in conventional computers.  In our research we took the step form tubes to micro-flow reactors as to limited the amount of DNA used,  to have complete control over the process of information flow and to be able to programme the computer optically.  The whole systems is implemented on a 4 silicon wafer.

We have developed a method in micro reactors which can select and transfer DNA molecules to other micro-reactors by means of paramagnetic beads, on which single DNA strands are immobilised, and micro-flow systems.  These Strand Transfer Modules (STM) can be optically programmed by means of photo immobilisation, thus creating a re-configurable computer.  The information flow can be tracked by using fluorescence labelled DNA molecules, which emit light after hybridisation to the single strands immobilised to the beads and excitation with a laser, and a single molecule detection system.

The STMs can be connected in various ways to solve certain problems.  We have chosen for the Maximum Clique problem as a benchmark for our DNA computer because of its relative small input of information. 

This page is maintained by Ho-Jin Chung (hjchung@bi.snu.ac.kr).
Last update: Apr. 4, 2002