Frontlines | The Lab Is Alive, With the Sound of Music

Erica P. Johnson

The music may be base-ic, but a team from Ramon y Cajal Hospital (RCH) in Madrid have found the song inside us all. They took each nucleotide from the genome of Candida albicans, plus a few other organisms, and arbitrarily designated a tone from the do-re-mi scale (Thyamine is re, guanine is so, adenine is la; and cytosine is do). The end result: a full musical interpretation of the genome.

Inspiration for the project came to microbiologist Aurora Sanchez Sousa while she was observing the sequence of the yeast. "I wondered what would happen [if] instead of genetic keys they were sound keys," Sanchez Sousa says. She took her idea to composer Richard Krull, a previous collaborator on a music project for several scientific videos about fungi-caused infections. After more than two years, the...

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