More news on J. Craig Venter's synthetic cell: the watermark DNA sequences are coded messages.
In creating the bacterium's DNA from scratch, the scientists added additional "watermark" base pair sequences to identify the cell as synthetic (i.e., not carrying the DNA of any natural organism). And it turns out, those sequences are words and messages. For instance:
CRAIGVENTER is coded as:
VENTERINSTITVTE is coded as:
HAMSMITH is coded as: TTAACTAGCTAACATGCAATGTCGATGATTACCCACTTAACTAGCTAA
CINDIANDCLYDE is coded as: TTAACTAGCTAATGCATAAACGACATCGCTAATGACTGTCTTTATGATGAATTAACTA GCTAATGGGTCGATGTTTGATGTTATGGAGCAGCAACGATGTTACGCAGCAGGGCAGT CGCCCTAAAACAAAGTTAAACATCATG
GLASSANDCLYDE is coded as:
But this isn't just genetic tom-foolery; the sequences demonstrate that the DNA strand really was assembled completely from scratch.