Is that supposed to be an eye? Yes, and the researchers who made this biomechanical version (which contains human cells) say it might eventually replace animals for testing.
Engineering feat: Creating an artificial eye isn’t easy; it turns out to be a pretty complex organ. This one has a sheet of real human corneal cells as well as a clear membrane called the conjunctiva.
It blinks? It does. The researchers created an ersatz eyelid that opens and closes, to mimic wear and tear. The eyelid is made of soft hydrogels and is controlled by a tiny electromechanical motor.
Not to worry, though—the gadget can’t see or perceive anything. It merely mimics the surface of the eye, say the bioengineers at the University of Pennsylvania who made it.
Fake tears: The researchers prefer to call them “contrived tears.” Whatever the name, they needed to add lubrication to make their version true to life. They say they used their gadget to test dry-eye drugs.
You can read more in the report about the device by Dongeun Huh and colleagues in Nature Medicine.
These scientists used CRISPR to put an alligator gene into catfish
The resulting fish appear to be more resistant to disease and could improve commercial production—should they ever be approved.
Next up for CRISPR: Gene editing for the masses?
Last year, Verve Therapeutics started the first human trial of a CRISPR treatment that could benefit most people—a signal that gene editing may be ready to go mainstream.
CRISPR for high cholesterol: 10 Breakthrough Technologies 2023
New forms of the gene-editing tool could enable treatments for common diseases.
An ALS patient set a record for communicating via a brain implant: 62 words per minute
Brain interfaces could let paralyzed people speak at almost normal speeds.
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