Picture of Japanese artist was saved inside protein molecules

Many large companies never delete information from its servers, therefore there is a risk that someday humanity will have nowhere to store information. At least this can happen if you use the current drives, but starting to write information to DNA or other molecules, the problem can at least temporarily eliminate. The entry of DNA molecules occurs quite a long time and costs a lot of money, so the researchers from Harvard and northwestern University in Chicago have developed a new method in the implementation of these in protein molecules.

According to project Manager Brian Cafferty, the developed method allows to save all information from the new York public library in one teaspoon of protein. The best variation of these molecules was calculated oligopeptides, which are much smaller DNA molecules are synthesized and significantly faster. Because of such properties, the cost and duration of data recording can be markedly reduced.

Numbers, letters and pixels are written to proteins in the form of groups, each containing eight ones and zeros. If the molecule has the data, they are presented in the form of units, and if not — zero. Subsequently, oligopeptides are arranged on a flat plate with tiny holes that are printed on a solid metal surface.

This data is then read by using a mass spectrometer, which weighs each molecule and finds that it contains information or not. So, in eight molecules, you can save one byte of information, and 32 is four bytes. Using this method the researchers were able to keep the molecules inside a painting of Katsushika Hokusai “the Great wave in Kanagawa”, and a portrait of Claude Shannon “father of information age”.

You can read the information with an accuracy of 99.9%. It is noteworthy that the thus encoded data is not so easy to get lost, as if it were stored on hard drives. Maybe after thousands of years the descendants of the people will be able to learn about our culture thanks to protein storage.

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