Researchers from the US have created a biorobot by the contraction of muscle fibers which controls the area of the spinal cord of the mouse. The processes of spinal neurons sprouted to the muscles, formed synapses and initiating spontaneous contractions. When exposed to glutamate movement of biohybrid became equal in amplitude and regular. Article published in the journal APL Bioengineering.
Scientists create more and more hybrid mechanisms that move due to the contractions of living muscle cells: the bio-robots already know how to walk, jump, crawl and even swim. The main issue faced by developers of such hybrids — how to manage their movements. This problem is solved with the help of electric fields, optogenetic and chemical stimulation. In living systems, muscle control nerve cells, and scientists grow muscle and nervous tissue next to activate the neurons in the management of the biorobot.
However, artificial systems of individual cells can’t replicate the subtle mechanisms of coordination of whole groups of muscles that occur in living organisms. In vertebrates the direct control of the movements engaged in spinal cord — he coordinates the contraction of the muscles-the flexor and extensor muscles both within the same limb and between limbs.