Chinese scientists design octopus-inspired color-changing machine

2022-December-26 16:09 By: Xinhua

SHANGHAI, Dec. 26 (Xinhua) -- A group of Chinese roboticists have designed a minuscule machine that can mimic octopuses whose cell pigments change color under chemical stress.

Fluorescence in response to chemical cues occurs throughout the natural world, such as in cephalopods that change color to evade predators.

Scientists from Shanghai Jiao Tong University worked to incorporate this type of chemically responsive fluorescence into a DNA nanomachine, according to a study published in the journal Science Robotics recently.

The DNA nanomachine they created fluoresces in response to changes of acidity inside the cell.

In in-vitro testing, the nanoscale device identified and quantified the absorption and emission, respectively, of materials through the cell membrane.

It can then autonomously change shape in response to pH variations, which, in turn, displays adaptive fluorescent colors, according to the study.

The new design offers insights on how to use robots to study living systems and their interactions, according to the study.

Editor: WXL
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