Volume 90 Issue 17 | p. 5 | News of The Week
Issue Date: April 23, 2012

Synthetic Genetics

Artificial Genes: Mimics of nucleic acids are capable of information storage, heredity, and evolution
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: Biological SCENE
Keywords: origin-of-life, genetic code, synthetic biology

The genetic basis for life on Earth may be stored in RNA and DNA, but scientists have now made six synthetic mimics of genetic material that are capable of recording, propagating, and evolving genetic information (Science, DOI: 10.1126/science.1217622).

The mimics could form a rudimentary basis for synthetic life and may have applications in materials science, molecular diagnostics, and therapeutics, comments Gerald F. Joyce, a chemist at Scripps Research . . .

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