Iddo Genuth writes to tell us that researchers at the Scripps Research Institute in San Diego have created two artificial DNA bases in an effort to "expand biology's potential." "In the future, [chemist Floyd] Romesberg envisions manipulating the genetic code of bacteria in order to assemble better drugs or even man-made proteins. Until now, the bases only work in bacteria, so human augmentation is currently not possible. Another option is to use alpha and beta to help construct nanomachines to be used for drug delivery. 'This is like jumping from the Stone Age to the Bronze Age,' Romesberg says. 'It takes time to figure out how best to use metal.'" Update 18:10 GMT by SM: Roger writes to share the NewScientist link with a bit more information. There is also the original release text for consideration.