The same molecular recognition of A-T and C-G base pairs that encodes biological information in the body can be used instead to encode the assembly of nanoparticle-based materials, Starr explained. In these new bio-materials, DNA strands act as specialized bridges that link nanoparticles into specific structures. The resulting systems have unusual properties that may be applicable to energy storage, drug delivery, optical materials, and nano-electronic devices. Starr’s group has developed an efficient computational model that enables the prediction of new structures to guide future experiments and applications.