Robo-sperm. The term sounds like something out of a B-rated science-fiction movie, but they may in fact be one of the most interesting and controversial medical advances of all time.
Scientists in Germany have developed the first ever working biological robots that are powered by – sperm.
To create these biological robots, or biobots as they are sometimes known, magnetic nanotubes 50 microns long and five to eight microns in diameter are dropped into a fluid containing bull sperm.
The tubes are narrower at one end to prevent the sperm cells from escaping. This allows the sperm head to remain trapped inside the tube, while the tail pokes out, acting as a propeller.
A magnetic remote control can then be used to change the direction of the sperm, guiding it to an egg, or to any other part of the body. This means that in addition to being a revolutionary form of assisted fertilization, these biobots also have the ability to be a targeted delivery system for certain types of medication.
What kinds of meds do doctors plan on delivering via robo-sperm?
This could have a wide range of applications, particularly in the treatment of tumors. With these biobots, doctors might deliver chemotherapy directly to a cancerous tumor without having to spread the medication through the whole body. They claim that this may help to limit many patient’s debilitating side effects, making them far more likely to continue treatment long enough to experience a successful remission.
While the biobots are obviously still in the very early stages of development researchers and scientists all over the world are already excited by the possibilities these tiny machines may indicate.
Do you trust doctors to inject biobots into your body that contain pharmaceuticals (and who knows what else) that they can control remotely?
Of course, there are many who will trust blindly and submit to any kind of treatment their doctor recommends. However, think twice about allowing anyone to inject a biobot into your body that they can control from a distance!
As with most technological advances, this one could clearly be used for evil as well as for good.
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Mike Bundrant is the author of Your Achilles Eel: Discover and Overcome the Hidden Source of Negativity, Bad Decisions and Self-Sabotage. Click here to learn more.