TOKYO, JAPAN, March 27, 2008 ---
DoCoMo has been pioneering research into the field of molecular communication, a new communication paradigm in which molecules are used as a communication medium. By combining communication technology and biochemistry, DoCoMo aims to develop systems that could transmit information about the biochemical conditions of living organisms, such as excitement, emotion, stress or disease.
The experiment has confirmed the feasibility of a proposed delivery system to transport specific molecules using artificially synthesized DNAs and chemically energized motor proteins, typically found in muscles and nerve cells, which are capable of moving autonomously by converting chemical energy into mechanical work.
The system, which functions on its own because it does not require external power supply or control, could help lead to the realization of a biochemical analyzer, or biochip, a fingertip-sized microchip for biological and chemical analysis.
The envisioned molecular delivery system could have many applications in medicine and healthcare. For instance, it may be possible to diagnose diseases or stress by directly analyzing biomolecules in a drop of sweat or blood using a mobile phone equipped with a biochip. The molecular delivery system would be packaged in the biochip, and the data generated in the biochemical analysis would be transmitted to a medical specialist via a mobile phone using traditional wireless technology. The system could be used, for example, for remote health checks or preventive medicine.
A mobile phone with a biochip could also have applications in the fields of environment (e.g., water analysis) and entertainment (e.g., fortune telling).
DoCoMo and The University of Tokyo are continuing their collaborative research into practical uses of molecular communication to identify applicable molecules and to develop an actual molecular delivery system for installation in a biochip.
- About NTT DoCoMo
NTT DoCoMois the world's leading mobile communications company. DoCoMo serves over 53 million customers, including 42 million people subscribing to FOMA™, launched as the world's first 3G mobile service based on W-CDMAin 2001. DoCoMo also offers a wide variety of leading-edge mobile multimedia services, including i-mode™, the world's most popular mobile e-mail/Internet service, used by more than 47 million people. With the addition of credit-card and other e-wallet functions, DoCoMo mobile phones have become highly versatile tools for daily life. NTT DoCoMois listed on the Tokyo (9437), London (NDCM) and New York (DCM) stock exchanges. For more information, visit www.nttdocomo.co.jp/english.