In Brief

Bioengineers from Stanford University have devised a way of repeatedly encoding, storing and erasing digital data within the DNA of living cells.

Bioengineers from Stanford University have created rewritable digital data storage in DNA. The scientists from the Department of Bioengineering have come up with a reliable method for repeatedly encoding, storing and erasing digital data within the DNA of living cells.

Postdoctoral scholar Jerome Bonnet, graduate student Pakpoom Subsoontorn, and assistant professor Drew Endy reapplied natural enzymes adapted from bacteria to flip specific sequences of DNA back and forth at will. The team’s rewritable device is called a recombinase addressable data module, or RAD for short. Endy commented on the benefits of their device:

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