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A gel cocktail uses the body’s sugars to ‘grow’ electrodes in living fish


For the first time, researchers have harnessed the body’s own chemistry to “grow” electrodes inside the tissues of living fish, blurring the boundary between biology and machines.

The technique uses the body’s sugars to turn an injected gel into a flexible electrode without damaging tissues, experiments show. Zebrafish with these electrodes grown in their brains, hearts and tail fins showed no signs of ill effects, and ones tested in leeches successfully stimulated a nerve, researchers report in the Feb. 24 Science.

Someday, these electrodes could be useful for applications ranging from studying how biological systems work to improving human-machine interfaces. They also could be used in “bioelectronic medicine,” such as brain stimulation therapies for depression, Parkinson’s disease and other conditions (SN:…

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