Biologically relevant molecular transducer with increased computing power and iterative abilities

Tamar Ratner, Ron Piran, Natasha Jonoska, Ehud Keinan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


As computing devices, which process data and interconvert information, transducers can encode new information and use their output for subsequent computing, offering high computational power that may be equivalent to a universal Turing machine. We report on an experimental DNA-based molecular transducer that computes iteratively and produces biologically relevant outputs. As a proof of concept, the transducer accomplished division of numbers by 3. The iterative power was demonstrated by a recursive application on an obtained output. This device reads plasmids as input and processes the information according to a predetermined algorithm, which is represented by molecular software. The device writes new information on the plasmid using hardware that comprises DNA-manipulating enzymes. The computation produces dual output: a quotient, represented by newly encoded DNA, and a remainder, represented by E. coli phenotypes. This device algorithmically manipulates genetic codes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)726-733
Number of pages8
JournalChemistry and Biology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 23 May 2013
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by the National Science Foundation under grant no. 0523928. N.J. is supported in part by NSF grants CCF-1117254 and DMS-0900671. E.K. thanks the US-Israel Binational Science Foundation (BSF), the Russell Berrie Nanotechnology Institute, and the Institute of Catalysis Science and Technology, Technion. E.K. is incumbent of the Benno Gitter & Ilana Ben-Ami Chair of Biotechnology, Technion.


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