Key idea: German researchers have now managed to create a synthetic muscle entirely from natural proteins, according to a press release from the University of Freiburg.
Original author and publication date: Andrea Núñez-Torrón Stock and Nathan Rennolds – March 1, 2022
Futurizonte Editor’s Note: The fully artificial human is just around the corner.
From the article:
The creation of synthetic muscles is an important and growing field in robotics and reconstructive medicine. They could be key in the development of new implants and more sophisticated prosthetics.
German researchers have now managed to create a synthetic muscle entirely from natural proteins, according to a press release from the University of Freiburg.
The team was led by Dr. Stefan Schiller and Dr. Matthias Huber from the livMatS Cluster of Excellence at the University of Freiburg.
Natural proteins had been used to make artificial muscles before. But until now, there hasn’t been one that can contract autonomously using chemical energy
Elastin is the natural protein that the scientists used to create their artificial protein.
It’s a protein found in human skin and blood vessels, the press release explained.
The team then designed two proteins based on elastin, each responding to a different stimulus — a change in temperature and a change in pH.
These were then combined in layers using a process called photochemical cross-linking. This procedure is explained in the research, published in Advanced Intelligent Systems
“In the future, the material could be developed further to respond to other stimuli, such as the salt concentration in the environment, and to consume other energy sources, such as malate derived from biomass,” Schiller added.