DNA, RNA Reading Just Got Thousands of Times Faster

DNA, RNA and protein reading just got thousands of times faster with the commercial release of Roswell Biotechnologies molecular electronics chip.

The first molecular electronics chip has been developed. This is realizing a 50-year-old goal molecular nanotechnology to integrate single molecules into circuits to achieve the ultimate scaling limits of Moore’s Law.

It was developed by Roswell Biotechnologies. The chip uses single molecules as universal sensor elements in a circuit to create a programmable biosensor with real-time, single-molecule sensitivity and unlimited scalability in sensor pixel density. This innovation, appearing this week in a peer-reviewed article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), will power advances in diverse fields that are fundamentally based on observing molecular interactions, including drug discovery, diagnostics, DNA sequencing, and proteomics.

Billions of active molecules on chips with molecular electronics chips commercially at scale will give us the following:

* Disease surveillance
Rapid, low cost, mobile detection systems for diverse biomarkers. Enabling powerful, in-the-field pathogen detection, infectious disease monitoring, environmental monitoring, and identification of bio-specimens, species or individuals.

* Precision Medicine Genome

Roswell wants to deliver the $100, 1-hour Genome for precision medicine. Simple, fast, low cost and with clinical-grade accuracy including phasing, assembly and direct reading of epigenetic data.

* Exabyte storage using DNA
DNA writing technologies enable the storage of unprecedented volumes of data, on the Exabyte scale, Roswell provides the reader solution with the speed and economics required for a complete data storage system. Roswell already had a CMOS chip with 100 million DNA reading devices a couple of years ago.

* this will eventually read DNA, RNA and proteins billions of times faster. It is already thousands of times faster.

Nextbigfuture has been covering Roswell Biotechnology for years and Brian Wang, saw Jim Tour speak at Foresight Conferences in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

“Biology works by single molecules talking to each other, but our existing measurement methods cannot detect this,” said co-author Jim Tour, PhD, a Rice University chemistry professor and a pioneer in the field of molecular electronics. “The sensors demonstrated in this paper for the first time let us listen in on these molecular communications, enabling a new and powerful view of biological information.”

The molecular electronics platform consists of a programmable semiconductor chip with a scalable sensor array architecture. Each array element consists of an electrical current meter that monitors the current flowing through a precision-engineered molecular wire, assembled to span nanoelectrodes that couple it directly into the circuit. The sensor is programmed by attaching the desired probe molecule to the molecular wire, via a central, engineered conjugation site. The observed current provides a direct, real-time electronic readout of molecular interactions of the probe. These picoamp-scale current-versus-time measurements are read out from the sensor array in digital form, at a rate of 1000 frames per second, to capture molecular interactions data with high resolution, precision and throughput.

The new molecular electronics platform detects multi-omic molecular interactions at the single-molecule scale, in real-time. The PNAS paper presents a wide array of probe molecules, including DNA, aptamers, antibodies, and antigens, as well as the activity of enzymes relevant to diagnostics and sequencing, including a CRISPR Cas enzyme binding its target DNA. It illustrates a wide range of applications for such probes, including the potential for rapid COVID testing, drug discovery and proteomics.

The paper also presents a molecular electronics sensor capable of reading DNA sequence. In this sensor, a DNA polymerase, the enzyme that copies DNA, is integrated into the circuit, and the result is direct electrical observation of the action of this enzyme as it copies a piece of DNA, letter by letter. Unlike other sequencing technologies that rely on indirect measures of polymerase activity, this approach achieves direct, real-time observation of a DNA polymerase enzyme incorporating nucleotides. The paper illustrates how these activity signals can be analyzed with machine learning algorithms to allow reading of the sequence.

“The Roswell sequencing sensor provides a new, direct view of polymerase activity, with the potential to advance sequencing technology by additional orders of magnitude in speed and cost,” said Professor George Church, a co-author of the paper, member of the National Academy of Sciences, and a Roswell Scientific Advisory Board member. “This ultra scalable chip opens up the possibility for highly distributed sequencing for personal health or environmental monitoring, and for future ultra-high throughput applications such as Exabyte-scale DNA data storage.”

SOURCES- Roswell Biotechnologies
Written by Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture.com

6 thoughts on “DNA, RNA Reading Just Got Thousands of Times Faster”

  1. If they start doing individualized medicine, they can't just forget about the patients, and then remind themselves who they're dealing with by reading a chart before walking in on you. It becomes a much more laborious job.

    Find a doctor with a "concierge/boutique" practice. They'll likely be much more open to the idea.

  2. I spoke recently to my physician about personalized medicine, and offered to give him a copy of the digital file Nebula Genomics created by "reading" my genome. He looked at me like I had grown a third eye between the existing two.

    Why is the medical establishment dragging it's feet on this? Are they afraid of taking some of the guess work out of treating patients? Do they want to keep treating the side effects of drugs they would not otherwise prescribe? Do they have a problem with people knowing ahead of time they have a greatly elevated risk of a particular disease?

    Are they afraid of having to learn something new?

  3. There's an enzyme, used to copy DNA; It's attached to a really tiny wire, and then exposed to DNA and the molecules DNA is made of.

    It starts copying the DNA. As it's doing this, it changes the electrical state of the wire, which they are monitoring closely. They can tell which "codons" it's copying at any given moment, and so read the sequence of the DNA as it is copied.

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