A recent study conducted by researchers at the Department of Energy’s Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI), based at Berkeley Lab, Berkeley, California, claims to have formulated a new way of synthesizing DNA sequence by rearranging enzymes in a creative way. Leaders of the research – Daniel Arlow and Sebastian Palluk – claim that it is cheaper, easier, and faster way for synthesizing DNA.
Jay Keasling, CEO of JBEI, Senior scientist, and co-author of this study supported the study and said, everything is based on DNA synthesis, in biology. 40 years ago, Caruthers process initiated a way to the synthesis of solid-phase DNA by attaching DNA building blocks one at a time. However, it was limited to 200 bases as it produces hazardous waste due to side reactions. The new way pioneered by Dan and Sebastian is less expensive. They were able to find this process if they would research in the way of Dan and Sebastian.
DNA sequence is a combination of four chemical bases, represented as A, C, T, and G. Researches constructs thousands of bases in the length by isolating genes from organisms or they can order these genes from a company at US$300 per gene. These genes can be made available by pasting gene sequence on the company website, and within two weeks it will be delivered.
Many scientists were trying to find a way to synthesis enzyme by using DNA. This enzyme, called as TdT (terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase), is found in the immune system. It is fast as it can add about 200 bases per minutes. Joining a nucleotide or DNA building block in linkage can help to reorganize the DNA according to the requirement, as it makes a space and does not disturb the functionality of enzyme. The researchers have tested their method by synthesizing manual DNA sequence of more than 10 bases.
Palluk said, tests seems right and proved wrong to them who claimed that it is not a right way to do it. With this method, linking 1000 bases is possible and they are confident about it. They have aimed to synthesize a gene in a very short time, and to achieve this, they will continue to work.