New DNA Storage Technique Saves 1B Terabytes Per Gram

By: | June 5th, 2016

TWIST Biosciences DNA storage

TWIST Biosciences DNA storage (Image Courtesy

The Intersection of Information Technology & Biology

Earlier this year, IndustryTap reported on a DNA storage project spearheaded by Microsoft and the University of Washington to store digital data in DNA. According to researchers, the new silicon-based DNA synthesis platform accelerates the writing of DNA at low cost. The process includes translating digital data into genetic code which is composed of As, Cs, Gs, and Ts.

A New Era of High-Density Data Storage

Now, Microsoft is reporting the purchase of 10 million strands of synthetic DNA from Twist Bioscience, a company involved in bio-detection, functional genomics, genome engineering, drugs, biodefense, and data storage. Microsoft is encoding binary data into synthetic DNA and recovering it with 100% accuracy. The fact that DNA has a storage life of many thousands of years suggests a permanent storage solution is around the corner.

Twist employs a semiconductor-based synthetic DNA manufacturing procedure to create the material being used by Microsoft. The progress being made means a revolution in data storage is upon us. Microsoft is also working on programming languages for DNA computing.

The following video, “Is DNA the Future of Storage?” explains why DNA is promising as a storage medium.

David Russell Schilling

David enjoys writing about high technology and its potential to make life better for all who inhabit planet earth.

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