High-fidelity de novo DNA synthesis using enzymes


writing dna using a polymerase

The Terminal Deoxynucleotidyl Transferase (TdT) is a unique polymerase that writes random sequences instead of copying existing DNA molecules. Proposals to employ TdT for the synthesis of defined DNA sequences date back to the early 1960s, but controlling the activity of the enzyme has proven to be difficult. Our novel technique based on polymerase-nucleotide conjugates finally enables defined nucleotide additions by TdT, and will unlock the potential of enzymatic de novo DNA synthesis.


The Promise of enzymatic DNA Synthesis

Over billions of years of evolution, nature has developed enzymes with superb characteristics for DNA synthesis. Harnessing these enzymes for manufacturing DNA will enable a procedure that is:

  • Faster, eliminating the bottleneck of DNA synthesis for biological research.

  • More precise, because mild conditions will prevent side reactions.

  • Sustainable, requiring neither organic solvents nor toxic reagents.

Unlike chemical DNA synthesis, enzymatic DNA synthesis occurs in aqueous conditions and can be performed without the generation of toxic waste.

Unlike chemical DNA synthesis, enzymatic DNA synthesis occurs in aqueous conditions and can be performed without the generation of toxic waste.