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Friday, February 07, 2003

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find related articles. powered by google. Nature: Science Update DNA: Beyond the double helix

""The way I think about DNA is different," says Gasser, who is not alone. Watson and Crick transformed biology by revealing the three-dimensional structure of DNA - and in so doing, set the stage for a lasting obsession with its sequence of chemical letters. But 50 years on, researchers are realizing that DNA has a fascinating life in three dimensions - and the fourth dimension of time - that makes it far more than a simple string of code.

Today's studies paint a more complete picture of DNA by examining the molecule as it coils in the cell's nucleus. In this context, structural biologists now believe that DNA is frequently unfaithful to its famous structure. The double helix, it has emerged, regularly morphs into alternative shapes and weaves itself into knots."

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Bioinformatics will be at the core of biology in the 21st century. In fields ranging from structural biology to genomics to biomedical imaging, ready access to data and analytical tools are fundamentally changing the way investigators in the life sciences conduct research and approach problems. Complex, computationally intensive biological problems are now being addressed and promise to significantly advance our understanding of biology and medicine. No biological discipline will be unaffected by these technological breakthroughs.


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