In New York, Columbia University Engineering researchers created tiny robotic type machines from biomaterials that can be implanted in the body for biomedical purposes. It doesn’t require batteries or a power source and the tiny devices can be created in about 30 minutes. The new technology uses hydrogels stacked in layers to make 3D flexible and freely moving parts and utilizes hydrogels’ natural mechanical properties to move around and do things like deliver bone cancer treatment drugs to a targeted area with better results and lower toxicity than the usual chemotherapy drugs.
Biomedical Engineering Professor Sam Sia told Robohub, “We’re really excited about this because we’ve been able to connect the world of biomaterials with that of complex, elaborate medical devices. Our platform has a large number of potential applications, including the drug delivery system demonstrated in our paper which is linked to providing tailored drug doses for precision medicine.”