Unveiling DNA algorithms: satellite DNA sequences as iterable objects. A computational model.
Every adult male of the little roundworm Caenorhabditis elegans is always and invariably comprised of exactly 1031 somatic cells, not one more, not one less; and so it is for the adult hermaphrodite (959 somatic cells); its intestine founder cell (the ‘E’ blastomere), if isolated and cultured, undergoes the same number of divisions as in the whole embryo (Robertson et al., 2014); the zygote of Drosophila melanogaster executes 13 cycles of asynchronous cell divisions without cellularization: how are these numbers counted? Artificial Intelligence (First and Second Order Logic, Knowledge graph Engineering) infers that, to perform precise stereotypical numbers of asynchronous cell divisions, a nucleic (genomic) counter is indispensable. Made up of tandemly repeated similar monomers, satellite DNA (satDNA) corresponds to iterable objects used in programming. The purpose of this article is to show how satDNA sequences can be iterated over to count a deterministic number of cell divisions: computational models (attached for free download) are introduced that handle DNA repeated sequences as iterable counters and simulate their use in cells through an epigenetic marker (cytosine methylation) as an iterator. SatDNA, because of its propensity to remodel its structure, can also operate as a strong accelerator in the evolution of complex organs and provides a basis to control interspecific variability of shapes.