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Protein Eng. 1987 Aug-Sep;1(4):295-300.

The design of a biochip: a self-assembling molecular-scale memory device.

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  • 1Department of Chemistry, University of Washington, Seattle 98195.


A design for a biochip memory device based on known materials and existing principles is presented. The fabrication of this memory system relies on the self-assembly of the nucleic acid junction system, which acts as the scaffolding for a molecular wire consisting of polyacetylene-like units. A molecular switch to control current is described which is based on the formation of a charge-transfer complex. A molecular-scale bit is presented which is based on oxidation-reduction potentials of metal atoms or clusters. The readable 'bit' which can be made of these components has a volume of 3 x 10(7) A3, and should operate at electronic speeds over short distances.

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