A DNA Translation Device

The translation device is shown in four panels below.  (a) Recapitulates the PX-JX2 device.  (b) Shows the translation device.  It consists of a diamond on the left and two double diamonds to its right.  The components are separated by two different PX- JX2 devices.  Thus, there are four states to the device, depending on how the devices are set.  The key point is that the numbers flanking the gaps on top (shown as 1,2 and 4,6) can be changed by changing the state of the whole molecule.  (c) Illustrates the operation of the device.  The device is set in the first step so that the left gap is 1,2 and the right gap is 4,7, by putting the left PX-JX2 device into the PX state and the right one into the JX2 state.  The system is exposed to double crossover (DX) molecules that contain sticky ends complementary to the gaps, as well as an initiator (black) that is on the left of all products.  In a fashion similar to the way that tRNA molecules are selected by a ribosome and message combination, the DX molecules are selected by the device.  They are then ligated together, and the final strand selected for sequencing.  (d) Illustrates the four products possible; each is obtained depending on the setting of the device.  This is translation, because the strands that control the PX-JX2 device are related to the products by an arbitrary code.

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