Science Saturday: Building a jellyfish

In this case, the jellyfish was not built from scratch. They took the cells from a rat heart and equipped a silicone shell with them, set up in a protein structure in the manner of a jellyfish. This construct actually swims!

Artificial jellyfish built from rat cells

As the samurai said of the fly, “ah, but it cannot reproduce” — still, it is a useful platform upon which to test heart drugs.

The researcher describes his work as “engineering,” contrasting it with most tissue work which he describes as “arts and crafts.”

In the Nature article, they describe their ambition to go after octopuses in the future. I confess that I am less excited about that; I’ve got rather an affinity for that odd, intelligent creature.

===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle