Friday, October 17, 2008

Better living through micropharmacology

FYI: I am 63.23% nerd

Not a geek, not a dork, but nerd! I have taken a test and am certifiable. This is why I enjoy science and am slowly gearing up for my term 2 Science Fiction class, oh yeah, I know you are jealous...

Check out this sweet article on how humans and technology are evolving, who knows we may even become cyborgs in the future, how tragically cool!!

Friday, October 17, 2008
Computing with RNA
Devices that self-assemble from biological molecules could represent the future of drug delivery.
By Duncan Graham-Rowe

"Scientists in California have created molecular computers that are able to self-assemble out of strips of RNA within living cells. Eventually, such computers could be programmed to manipulate biological functions within the cell, executing different tasks under different conditions.
That opens up the possibility of computing devices that can respond to specific conditions within the cell, he says. For example, it may be possible to develop drug delivery systems that target cancer cells from within by sensing genes used to regulate cell growth and death.
The input sensors are made from aptamers, RNA molecules that behave a bit like antibodies, binding tightly to specific targets. Similarly, the output components, or actuators, are made of ribozymes, complex RNA molecules that have catalytic properties similar to those of enzymes. These two components are joined by yet another RNA molecule that serves as a transmitter, which is activated when a sensor molecule recognizes an input chemical and, in turn, triggers an actuator molecule.
By combining the RNA components in certain ways, the researchers showed that they can get them to behave like different types of logic gates--circuit elements common to any computer. For example, an AND gate produces an output only when its inputs detect the presence of both drugs, while a NOR gate produces an output only when neither drug is detected."

1 comment:

doug.abshire said...

Nanotechnology through self-replicating biologically active molecules is THE FUTURE! Thanks, uncle will for the link. DA