Ring Fossilizes DNA Beneath Diamonds

A new line of hyper-personalized jewelry lets you wear your lover’s DNA embedded beneath a diamond, fossilized as if a mosquito in amber.

Developed by Swiss scientist Robert Grass, Identity Inside uses simple DNA extraction techniques to create a hyper-personalized piece of jewelry unlike any other.

“We started playing around with the idea of what we could do with this technology,” Grass told Live Science. “Our DNA is what makes us unique, and with jewelry, it’s something that you want to be unique and special.”

Once a purchaser provides a saliva swab, Grass’ lab extracts and purifies their DNA. Chemicals that stimulate the growth of glass are then introduced to the solution, capturing the strands of DNA in tiny powdered glass capsules. The team then inserts this powder into a divot in the jewelry and seals it with a .02 carat diamond.

The concept for Identity Inside arose from the frustrations that Grass felt when searching for something precious to give his wife to celebrate the birth of their child.

“None of the products was unique,” he wrote on the project’s Kickstarter page. “Everything had a feeling of [being] globally accessible, exchangeable, nothing reflected the unique bond between me and my wife.”

As a chemical engineer, Grass’s work focuses primarily on the interaction of nanoparticles, surfaces, and biochemistry. His most recent efforts include a groundbreaking study on how to store digital information in the form of encapsulated DNA.

It should come as no surprise, then, that his foray into consumer products comes in the form of jewelry laden with preserved genetic information.

Identity Inside offers four unique products that cater to men and women alike, including: two models of a stark, sterling silver ring with the DNA powder embedded into the band; a sleek rose gold capsule-pendant; and the custom-made, sapphire crystal Langenthal watch, which carries the fossilized DNA in its crown. Each of the pieces bears a subtle .02 carat diamond, with prices ranging between approximately $350 to $980 USD.

Identity Inside will continue to accept donations through Kickstarter until Dec 20. For more information about the products or about the process of synthetic DNA fossilization, visit the Identity Inside website.

Feature photo courtesy Pixabay.