Researchers at Harvard University have built an artificial jellyfish using a sheet of silicone and rat heart cells, which they lovingly call a medusoid. When electricity is run through the tank, it swims exactly like a real jellyfish.
"Morphologically, we've built a jellyfish. Functionally, we've built a jellyfish. Genetically, this thing is a rat," says Kit Parker, a biophysicist at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, who led the work. The project is described today in Nature Biotechnology1.
Parker's lab works on creating artificial models of human heart tissues for regenerating organs and testing drugs, and the team built the medusoid as a way of understanding the "fundamental laws of muscular pumps". It is an engineer's approach to basic science: prove that you have identified the right principles by building something with them.
|Saturn Moon Has Seas of Sand|
|Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature|
|Feeling Your Phone Vibrating When It Actually Isn't Is All Part of Healthy Brain Functions|
|Mind Controlled Slot Car Racing|
|Bottle of Water + Microwave Oven = Dangerous Explosion|
|“The Amazon Dash button for horny men and women who don’t feel comfortable telling their partner they’d like to have sex.”|
|“How this religious holiday became the rampant, love-fuelled corp-fest.”|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|U.S.S. Enterprise Owner's Manual|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|Fake Name Generator|
|“Could we cover an entire desert in solar panels?”|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|Testing Whether the Earth is Round or Flat|
|“When Life Gives You Lemons.”|
|iPhone 6, the First Smartphone to Disrupt NSA's Spying|
|Darth Vader Surfing|