Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Technology
Networks
Scientific Communities
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

IBM Research Aims to Build Nanoscale DNA Sequencer to Help Drive Down Cost of Personalized Genetic Analysis

Published: Thursday, October 08, 2009
Last Updated: Thursday, October 08, 2009
Bookmark and Share
New advanced research effort to demonstrate a silicon-based “DNA Transistor” could help pave the way to read human DNA easily.

In an effort to build a nanoscale DNA sequencer, IBM scientists are drilling nano-sized holes in computer-like chips and passing DNA strands through them in order to read the information contained within their genetic code.

This advanced research effort to demonstrate a silicon-based “DNA Transistor” could help pave the way to read human DNA easily and quickly, generating advancements in health condition diagnosis and treatment. The challenge in the effort is to slow and control the motion of the DNA through the hole so the reader can accurately decode what is in the DNA.

If successful, the project could improve throughput and reduce cost to achieve the vision of personalized genome analysis at a cost of $100 to $1,000. In comparison, the first sequencing ever done by the Human Genome Project (HGP) cost $3 billion.

Having access to an individual’s personal genetic code could advance personalized medicine by using genomic and molecular data to facilitate the discovery and clinical testing of new products, and help determine a person's predisposition to a particular disease or condition.

A team of IBM scientists from four fields – nanofabrication, microelectronics, physics and biology - are converging to master the technique that threads a long DNA molecule through a three nanometer wide hole, known as a nanopore, in a silicon chip. A nanometer is one one-billionth of a meter or about 100,000 times smaller than the width of a human hair.

As the molecule is passed through the nanopore, it is ratcheted one unit of DNA at a time, as an electrical sensor “reads” the DNA. This sensor that identifies the genetic information is the subject of intense ongoing research. The information gathered from the reader could be used to gain a better understanding of an individual’s medical makeup to help further the pursuit of personalized healthcare.

“The technologies that make reading DNA fast, cheap and widely available have the potential to revolutionize bio-medical research and herald an era of personalized medicine,” said IBM Research Scientist Gustavo Stolovitzky. “Ultimately, it could improve the quality of medical care by identifying patients who will gain the greatest benefit from a particular medicine and those who are most at risk of adverse reaction.”

IBM Research is working to optimize a process for controlling the rate at which a DNA strand moves through a nano-scale aperture on a thin membrane during analysis for DNA sequencing. While scientists around the world have been working on using nanopore technology to read DNA, nobody has been able to figure out how to have complete control of a DNA strand as it travels through the nanopore. Slowing the speed is critical to being able to read the DNA strand. IBM scientists believe they have a unique approach that could tackle this challenge.

To control the speed at which the DNA flows through the microprocessor nanopore, IBM researchers have developed a device consisting of a multilayer metal/dielectric nano-structure that contains the nanopore. Voltage biases between the electrically addressable metal layers will modulate the electric field inside the nanopore. This device utilizes the interaction of discrete charges along the backbone of a DNA molecule with the modulated electric field to trap DNA in the nanopore.

By cyclically turning on and off these gate voltages, scientists showed theoretically and computationally, and expect to be able prove experimentally, the plausibility of moving DNA through the nanopore at a rate of one nucleotide per cycle – a rate that IBM scientists believe would make DNA readable.

A human genome sequencing capability affordable for individuals is the ultimate goal of the DNA sequencing and is commonly referred to as “$1,000 genome.”


Further Information
Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 2,500+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More Than 3,700+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Watson to Gain Ability to “See” with Planned $1B Acquisition of Merge Healthcare
Deal brings Watson technology together with leader in medical images.
Friday, August 07, 2015
IBM and Mars Launch Pioneering Effort to Drive Advances in Global Food Safety
New Sequencing the Food Supply Chain Consortium to undertake the largest-ever metagenomics study and unlock food safety insights across the supply chain.
Friday, February 06, 2015
IBM’s Big Data & Analytics Monitors Babies at INFANT Centre
INFANT Centre at University College Cork to use IBM Big Data & Analytics for real time monitoring of babies in neonatal intensive care.
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
The New York Genome Center and IBM Watson Group Collaborate
Project aims to apply advanced analytics to genomic treatment options for brain cancer patients.
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Texas A&M System Teams with IBM to Drive Computational Sciences Research through Big Data and Analytics
The collaboration will leverage the power of big data analytics and high performance computing (HPC) systems.
Monday, February 03, 2014
IBM Commits $1.2 Billion to Expand Global Cloud Footprint, Builds Massive Network
IBM is committing to significantly expand its global network of cloud data centers.
Monday, January 27, 2014
IBM and Swiss Hospital Test New Tool for Diagnosing Cancer
The compact and easy-to-use device may help unravel tumor heterogeneity and assist in personalized treatment strategies.
Thursday, October 24, 2013
IBM’s Biomedical Analytics Platform Helps Doctors Personalise Treatment
Italy’s Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori testing new decision support solutions for cancer treatments.
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
New Silicon Probe Assists in Disease Diagnostics and Drug Discovery
Scientists have developed a flexible, non-contact microfluidic probe made from silicon that can aid researchers and pathologists to investigate critical tissue samples accurately, reducing the need for large biopsy samples.
Monday, January 16, 2012
IBM and University Researchers to Develop Research Tools to Improve Cancer Patient Outcomes
Advanced imaging and computer technologies aimed at providing for reliable prognosis leading to more personalized treatment.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
IBM Discovery Could Shed Light on Workings of the Human Genome
IBM researchers discover numerous DNA patterns shared by areas of the human genome.
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
IBM Joins Forces with top Cancer Centers
IBM Collaborates with MSKCC, the Molecular Profiling Institute and Sainte-Justine Research Center.
Friday, November 11, 2005
IBM create smallest solid-state light emitter with Nanotubes

Thursday, May 08, 2003
IBM and IDBS Form Global Strategic Alliance

Wednesday, April 02, 2003
Scientific News
The Changing Tides of the In Vitro Diagnostics Market
With the increasing focus in personalized medicine, diagnostics plays a crucial role in patient monitoring.
Immunotherapy Agent Benefits Patients with Drug-Resistant Multiple Myeloma in First Human Trial
Daratumumab proved generally safe in patients, even at the highest doses.
Low-level Arsenic Exposure Before Birth Associated with Early Puberty in Female Mice
Study examine whether low-dose arsenic exposure could have similar health outcomes in humans.
Inciting an Immune Attack On Cancer Cells
A new minimally invasive vaccine that combines cancer cells and immune-enhancing factors could be used clinically to launch a destructive attack on tumors.
‘Mutation-Tracking’ Blood Test for Breast Cancer
Scientists have developed a blood test for breast cancer able to identify which patients will suffer a relapse after treatment, months before tumours are visible on hospital scans.
Cellular Contamination Pathway for Heavy Elements Identified
Berkeley Lab scientists find that an iron-binding protein can transport actinides into cells.
Intensity of Desert Storms May Affect Ocean Phytoplankton
MIT study finds phytoplankton are extremely sensitive to changing levels of desert dust.
Common ‘Heart Attack’ Blood Test May Predict Future Hypertension
Small rises in troponin levels may have value as markers for subclinical heart damage and high blood pressure.
LaVision BioTec Reports on the Neuro Research on the Human Brain After Trauma
Company reports on the work of Dr Ali Ertürk from the Institute for Stroke and Dementia Research at LMU Munich.
NIH Study Shows No Benefit of Omega-3 Supplements for Cognitive Decline
Research was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Scroll Up
Scroll Down
Skyscraper Banner

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
2,500+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
3,700+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FREE!