Coseproof messages in the genes

A virtually impossible to crack

To safeguard messages and make them unrecognizable, is not known to be a concern of the information age. Scientists at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York but have now discovered a whole new method of trapping: hiding a message in genes (nature, vol 399, p 533).

The principle comes from the context of the intelligence services, as in the case of the caption. During the Second World War, German spies used a very fine photographic emulsion to transform a text written with the typewriter in tiny pixels that were normally overlooked. With a similar technology, the scientists hid their first, in DNA molecules, the scientists encoded in DNA molecules, which will look at the Second World War: "June 6 invasion: Normandy", in a plethora of other DNA strangen

Each letter in the alphabet corresponds to a chain of three nucleotides of the DNA. For example, A is translated into CGA, B in GCA, etc. The scientists thus transfer the sentence into the genetic code and marked the resulting DNA strand at the beginning and at the end with a nucleotid sequence. Then these genetic messages were mixed with fragments of natural DNA strange as a long time. Only one strand under three billion others contains the fussed message. This will help you through the huge "rush" obscured. They in the mixture where all the strange seem to be identical to find goods virtually impossible if you have no clue. The mixture can then be dried, for example, on a paper, which is cut into tiny pixels, which in turn can apply approximately to the points in a text on a normal paper. At least the scientists have carried out such a test. The letter with the pixels was sent and analyzed when he came back. The Embassy remained.

To decelerate them, the receptionist knows the DNA sequence, which is at the ends of the amino acid strange. With the standard method of the polymerase chain reaction, the corresponding DNA strange can then be copied again and again and decipher.

Whether spies will ever use this technique could be questionable. At least the devices that have a message encoding and decoding have to be miniaturized, as Bancroft says. So far, at least the American intelligence services are not yet approaching the researchers. But you could mark all possible items with such a genetic code. Especially in genetically-technologically produced animals and plants that are copyrighted, this could be interesting. In analogy to a digital watermark in a digital file, simply builds a kind of genetic watermark into the living beings, which could be identified and to be protected against unlawful copying or umder.

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