The Automatic-Design Tools That Are Changing Synthetic Biology

December 14, 2018

(Nature) – Your smartphone and laptop are made of electronic circuits. Genetic circuits, modelled on the electronic ones, are human-designed combinations of genetic components that interact to produce one or more proteins or RNA molecules, for example, in response to a given stimulus, such as a toxin. Under the right conditions, the circuit might be triggered to make “protein A, which then interacts with protein B to give outcome C”, says David Riglar, a synthetic biologist at Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts. But until a decade or so ago, these two kinds of circuits were made in very different ways.

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