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Nucleic acid memory

Nucleic acid memory has a retention time far exceeding electronic memory. As an alternative storage media, DNA surpasses the information density and energy of operation offered by flash memory.

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Figure 1: Change of storage needs over time.
Figure 2: Mechanism of NAM information degradation by hydrolysis.
Figure 3: Generic barrier models and memory retention.

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Acknowledgements

Research described in this Commentary was supported in part by the Micron Foundation, the Semiconductor Research Corporation, the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health (K25GM093233), and the National Science Foundation (CMMI–1344915). Special thanks are given to K. Marker and D. Zahn for their thoughtful reviews of the manuscript.

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Correspondence to George M. Church or William L. Hughes.

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Competing interests

W.L.H. and R.M.Z have received financial support to explore NAM technologies from the Semiconductor Research Corporation, the Function Accelerated nanomaterial Engineering Research Center, and from the Micron Foundation. G.M.C has patents licensed to Oxford Nanopore Technologies, equity in Genia-Roche for nanopore sequencing, financial involvement in multiple next-generation sequencing and synthesis companies, and financial support from Technicolor on DNA-storage technologies.

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Zhirnov, V., Zadegan, R., Sandhu, G. et al. Nucleic acid memory. Nature Mater 15, 366–370 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1038/nmat4594

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