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Computing Reliably with Molecular Walkers

Professor Marta Kwiatkowska ( Department of Computer Science, University of Oxford )

DNA computing is emerging as a versatile technology that promises a vast range of applications, including biosensing, drug delivery and synthetic biology. DNA logic circuits can be achieved in solution using strand displacement reactions, or by decision-making molecular robots-so called 'walkers'-that traverse tracks placed on DNA 'origami' tiles.

 Similarly to conventional silicon technologies, ensuring fault-free DNA circuit designs is challenging, with the difficulty compounded by the inherent unreliability of the DNA technology and lack of scientific understanding. This lecture will give an overview of computational models that capture DNA walker computation and demonstrate the role of quantitative verification and synthesis in ensuring the reliability of such systems. Future research challenges will also be discussed.



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