Scientists Build Live-Cell Robot Jellyfish
Precisely matches real thing
Scientists have bioengineered a jellyfish made of silicone and live cells that can be controlled using pulses of electricity. The jellyfish, nicknamed “Medusoid,” is made from a silicone polymer and the muscle cells from a rat heart. “We coaxed them to self-organize so that they matched the [muscle] architecture of a jellyfish precisely,” Dr. Kevin Kit Parker, the study’s co-author, said. The robot is designed to swim through the water in response to electrical currents, which cause the muscle tissue to contract. The hope is that the technology may one day be used to bioengineer human organs. The research team now plans to create a jellyfish that can activate the muscle contractions internally and gather food on its own.