One-Time Flippable DNA Segments for Biological Computers

by Bruce Henschen

This semester, I have been working on engineering Hix sites, which enable a protein from Salmonella called Hin recombinase to flip a segment of DNA:

See an animation of Hin flipping segments of DNA

Specifically, we would like to be able to control the Hin/Hix mechanism by allowing DNA segments to flip once then become "frozen" in the correct orientation:

Sites such as these would give us better control over how E. coli flip genes using Hin recombinase.

See the Hin/Hix Complex and my ideas for
designing One-Time Flippable Hix Sites

To Test these sites, I designed an assay that would determine whether pLac could be flipped when it rested between different pairs of Hix sites.


See the results I gathered from this semester's work

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