Netflix has taken its series production to the next level when it partnered with Twist Bioscience and ETH Zurich’s Professor Robert Grass to store the show Biohackers in Twist DNA, said Medical Device Network.
The show is about a medical student who is looking into the mysterious activities of the University of Freiburg star lecturer Professor Tanja Lorenz. It focuses on the use and misuse of synthetic biology and engineering.
According to Medical Device Network, Netflix worked with DNA storage companies “to demonstrate the possibilities of so-called biohacking and to illustrate that some of the show’s concepts are more than just science fiction.”
With the help of Grass and Twist Bioscience, the company was able to have the first episode of Biohackers in segments using Twist’s synthesis platform described as being “high-quality, high-throughput, silicon-based.”
Grass and his associates at the academe also contributed to this record-breaking development for Netflix.
‘The future is now’
Regarding this endeavor, Twist CEO and co-founder Emily Leproust said, “It’s exciting to ground the fictional series, which expounds beyond the boundaries of what is possible with DNA today, with the reality of preserving ground-breaking cultural media in synthetic DNA.”
She also remarked that while the technology seems to be futuristic, it is now possible because “the future is now.”
Storing the first episode of Biohackers in this storage option goes beyond its marketing potentials, especially as such storage options offer a more advantageous method. The DNA is an extremely dense molecule, thus, having the capacity to store significant amounts of information, said Leproust.
Grass remarked that a gram of DNA has the potential to store 200 exabytes or 200 million terabytes of data. Because of this, researchers theorize that 20 grams would be able to accommodate all existing digital information across the globe.
Aside from its potential capacity, this medium is also a stable option. Compared to current storage devices such as hard drives and memory cards which could last for 5 to 20 years, this option could theoretically last for thousands, even millions.
This theory is based on the fact that ancient fossils from thousands and millions of years are able to give scientists today information.
For now, Biohackers is only a high-profile project that aims to make the larger consumer-base aware of this option. Upon making improvements, DNA storage could become available in the future.