DNA Found to Have Impossible Telepathic Properties

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DNA Found to Have "Impossible" Telepathic Properties...

You knew I was going to say this.

Anyways, very interesting, what do you make of it?

DNA has been found to have a bizarre ability to put itself together, even at a distance, when according to known science it shouldn't be able to. Explanation: None, at least not yet.

Scientists are reporting evidence that contrary to our current beliefs about what is possible, intact double-stranded DNA has the "amazing" ability to recognize similarities in other DNA strands from a distance. Somehow they are able to identify one another, and the tiny bits of genetic material tend to congregate with similar DNA. The recognition of similar sequences in DNA's chemical subunits, occurs in a way unrecognized by science. There is no known reason why the DNA is able to combine the way it does, and from a current theoretical standpoint this feat should be chemically impossible.

Even so, the research published in ACS' Journal of Physical Chemistry B, shows very clearly that homology recognition between sequences of several hundred nucleotides occurs without physical contact or presence of proteins. Double helixes of DNA can recognize matching molecules from a distance and then gather together, all seemingly without help from any other molecules or chemical signals.

In the study, scientists observed the behavior of fluorescently tagged DNA strands placed in water that contained no proteins or other material that could interfere with the experiment. Strands with identical nucleotide sequences were about twice as likely to gather together as DNA strands with different sequences. No one knows how individual DNA strands could possibly be communicating in this way, yet somehow they do. The "telepathic" effect is a source of wonder and amazement for scientists.

"Amazingly, the forces responsible for the sequence recognition can reach across more than one nanometer of water separating the surfaces of the nearest neighbor DNA," said the authors Geoff S. Baldwin, Sergey Leikin, John M. Seddon, and Alexei A. Kornyshev and colleagues.

This recognition effect may help increase the accuracy and efficiency of the homologous recombination of genes, which is a process responsible for DNA repair, evolution, and genetic diversity. The new findings may also shed light on ways to avoid recombination errors, which are factors in cancer, aging, and other health issues.

Posted by Rebecca Sato.

Source: Dailygalaxy.com
 

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Ygggdrasil
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Here's the reference for the journal article referred to by the OP:

Baldwin et al. "DNA Double Helices Recognize Mutual Sequence Homology in a Protein Free Environment" J. Phys. Chem. B, 2008, 112 (4): 1060–1064. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jp7112297" [Broken]

Abstract:
The structure and biological function of the DNA double helix are based on interactions recognizing sequence complementarity between two single strands of DNA. A single DNA strand can also recognize the double helix sequence by binding in its groove and forming a triplex. We now find that sequence recognition occurs between intact DNA duplexes without any single-stranded elements as well. We have imaged a mixture of two fluorescently tagged, double helical DNA molecules that have identical nucleotide composition and length (50% GC; 294 base pairs) but different sequences. In electrolytic solution at minor osmotic stress, these DNAs form discrete liquid-crystalline aggregates (spherulites). We have observed spontaneous segregation of the two kinds of DNA within each spherulite, which reveals that nucleotide sequence recognition occurs between double helices separated by water in the absence of proteins, consistent with our earlier theoretical hypothesis. We thus report experimental evidence and discuss possible mechanisms for the recognition of homologous DNAs from a distance.

Based on the abstract I do have some questions about their methods (specifically the effects of dye-dye interactions), but I'd have to read through the paper to ensure that the appropriate controls were done. Perhaps later I'd have the time to read though the paper and comment later.
 
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