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 'Darwin chip' brings evolution into the classroom

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Date posted: 08/04/2008

Researchers have created an automated device that evolves a biological molecule on a chip filled with hundreds of miniature chambers. In other words, an evolutionary biochip.

The molecule, which stitches together strands of RNA, became 90 times more efficient after just 70 hours of evolution.

"It's survival of the fittest," says Brian Paegel, a biochemist at the Scripps Research Institute, in La Jolla, California, who led the study with colleague Gerald Joyce.

By demonstrating natural selection in real-time, the device could also help dispel doubts over evolution in the classroom and beyond, says Joyce. "There's a whole bunch of people who think evolution is only theory, including some former presidential candidates."

See the full Story via external site: www.newscientist.com



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