Oct 19, 2023

Art with DNA—digitally creating 16 million colors by chemistry

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry

The DNA double helix is composed of two DNA molecules whose sequences are complementary to each other. The stability of the duplex can be fine-tuned in the lab by controlling the amount and location of imperfect complementary sequences.

Fluorescent markers bound to one of the matching DNA strands make the duplex visible, and fluorescence intensity increases with increasing duplex stability. Now, researchers at the University of Vienna succeeded in creating fluorescent duplexes that can generate any of 16 million colors—a work that surpasses the previous 256 colors limitation.

This very large palette can be used to “paint” with DNA and to accurately reproduce any digital image on a miniature 2D surface with 24-bit color depth. This research was published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

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