The forest of DNA

Vertical strands of DNA can be constructed using the enzyme TdTase, terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase, according to US scientists. Ashutosh Chilkoti and colleagues at Duke University start with a forest of short DNA strands on nanoscale patches of gold, lithographed on to a silicon surface. They then employ TdTase and a cobalt catalyst to adds nucleotide building blocks to the tops of the DNA forest, extending the forest canopy. Chilkoti suggests that the development of this and related technology will ultimately enable bio-manufacturing possible at an industrial scale.