Error-correcting mechanisms in DNA self-assembly

Manish K. Gupta and Navin Kashyap
Department of Mathematics
Queens University, Kingston, Canada


Self-assembly is a process by which a supramolecular species forms spontaneously from its components. This process is ubiquitous throughout life chemistry, and is central to biological information processing. It has been suggested that self-assembly will ultimately become a useful tool for bio-molecular computation, crystallography, nano-technology, and medicine. However robustness (error correction) is a key challenge in realizing the potential of self-assembly. Several combinatorial error correction schemes exist in the literature some of which are provably effective under certain models for the self-assembly process. In this work, we consider alternative such schemes and discuss their effectiveness in controlling errors under the standard models of self-assembly.