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Four new DNA letters double life’s alphabet


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The DNA of life on Earth naturally stores its information in just four key chemicals — guanine, cytosine, adenine and thymine, commonly referred to as G, C, A and T, respectively.

Now scientists have doubled this number of life’s building blocks, creating for the first time a synthetic, eight-letter genetic language that seems to store and transcribe information just like natural DNA.

"Synthetic DNA seems to behave like the natural variety, suggesting that chemicals beyond nature’s four familiar bases could support life on Earth"

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-019-00650-8

 

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