Digital to Biological Printer

In Nature Biotechnology Gibson, Venter et al. describe a biologic printer that can take instructions from the web and without human intervention “print” a variety of biologics:

…DNA templates, RNA molecules, proteins and viral particles were produced in an automated fashion from digitally transmitted DNA sequences without human intervention.

Motherboard has a good writeup:

“If you had [a DBC] hooked up to your desktop computer, we could email you insulin or a vaccine, and the device would produce it for you ready-to-go,” Venter said. “If you think about all the protein-based drugs that are out there… If you can get those by email instead of getting them from the pharmacy, is conceptually going to be a very different world.”

And what is the ultimate goal?

Right now, it prints proteins. In the far future, it could print human babies on Mars.

Hat tip: Martin Laurence.


Comments for this post are closed