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Junk DNA Movie Scanning

Forget flagella. Maybe our panspermian creators left a visual
  [vote for,

Creationism proponents famously point to certain complex biological mechanisms as being too complex to "evolve", thus being "evidence" of intelligent design.

E. Coli clearly couldn't have evolved to show movies,and yet, here it is (see link).

So before all bacteria on Earth is contaminated with memes and gifs, scan existing DNA to make sure there's not a video message there already.

theircompetitor, Jul 12 2017

E. Coli Movie Storage https://www.scienti...tore-movies-in-dna/
[theircompetitor, Jul 12 2017]


8th of 7, Jul 12 2017

       "I'm sorry Mrs. Szykowski - you appear to have a strain of multiply-resistant On Golden Pond."
MaxwellBuchanan, Jul 13 2017

       Seems like a perfect way to store a lot of the crap movies produced today. 'The Room' is a great candidate.   

       Now you need a projector system capable of reading and displaying the data, preferably with the projector bulb shining out of a mannequin's ass.
RayfordSteele, Jul 13 2017

       It's actually a really bad way to store data, and it's only being done because it's cool (and showcases more useful genome editing techniques).   

       A typical bacterium has a genome of about 5 megabases (which equates to about 10 million bits, or about a megabyte of data, total). Current cloning vectors will let you put up to a few hundred kilobases of exogenous DNA in there easily enough; with fancier techniques you could get maybe another 5 megabases. So, your bacterium will store about a megabyte of data.   

       However, your data will need to be edited to make sure it doesn't encode anything that's biologically active (such as, by chance, a promotor and a toxic peptide).   

       OK, so now you've got a Mb of data in your E. coli, and you can propagate this into the environment. However, within about a day (if the bacteria are growing and replicating) they'll have started to spit out bits of your data, and to accumulate point mutations. Within maybe a week they'll have thrown it all out because it's no use to them; bacteria that have lost the useless DNA will grow just that bit faster than those that still have it.   

       So, if you want a very, very expensive way to make trillions of copies of 1Mb of data, that's stable for only a few days, bacteria are the way to go.   

       It would make more sense to put your data into eukaryotic cells. Not something small like yeast (which doesn't have much more capacity than bacteria, and will mutate/lose your data almost as fast), but something like, say, human. A human could be made with a few hundred Mb of encoded data. Sequencing (from a large number of cells, to correct errors that will accumulate) could then recover the data 80 years later. Their children would (depending on where you put the data) inherit the data, though it would slowly get shuffled, mutated and diluted. And, of course, all your data is walking around in one (or a few) fragile bodies.   

       Still, with a few more decades' work, genomic data encoding might compete with, say, 5 1/4" floppies (except on read/write speeds).
MaxwellBuchanan, Jul 13 2017

       //Not something small like yeast..... but something like, say, human.//   

       Cypress Trees, Shirley? Plants have loads of DNA, lifespan in the order of pyramids and operate a solar powered data curation system.
bs0u0155, Jul 13 2017

       Hmm. Not a bad idea. On the other hand, plant cell transformation and general editing aren't as well worked out as for mammalian cells. Also, I'm not sure how the somatic genomic stability of a Cypress compares to that of, say, an Italian. You'd be a bit pissed off if the leaf you'd just bought was missing the last 10 minutes of The Great Escape, or had a transposon half way through Ferris Bueller's Day Off.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jul 13 2017

       //It's actually a really bad way to store data//   

       Like I said, perfect for bad movies... Maybe they could evolve into better ones over time...   

       Hmmm... if a million monkeys had a million CRISPR-systems and a million years passed by, could we remove Jar-Jar from every Star Wars scene he ever appears in?
RayfordSteele, Jul 13 2017

       quantum multiverse dictates that Jar-Jar is in Casablanca
theircompetitor, Jul 14 2017

       //quantum multiverse dictates that Jar-Jar is in Casablanca//   

       That's sacrilege. The version with Peter Beardsley and Myra Binglebat was definitive.
bs0u0155, Jul 14 2017

       Casablanca without Jar-jar would be like Titanic without Leonardo DiCaprio …
8th of 7, Jul 14 2017


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