From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Xenobot
Mains level : Biomedicines and their applications
Researchers have developed robots from stem cells of frogs called Xenobots.
Xenobots, the name itself suggests its peculiarity.
- Xenobots, named after the African clawed frog are synthetic organisms that are automatically designed by computers to perform some desired function and built by combining together different biological tissues.
- They are less than a 1 millimeter (0.039 inches) wide and composed of just two things: skin cells and heart muscle cells, both of which are derived from stem cells harvested from early (blastula stage) frog embryos.
- They can self-heal after damage, record memories and work together in groups.
- These biological robots can record information about their surroundings and move using cilia – minute hair like particles present on their surface.
- These soft-body living machines can have several applications in biomedicine and the environment.
- They could be made from a human patient’s own cells, which would bypass the immune response challenges of other kinds of micro-robotic delivery systems.
- Such xenobots could potentially be used to scrape plaque from arteries and with additional cell types and bioengineering, locate and treat disease.