A microfluidic cell copies some basic functions of life, MIT Technology Review reports. In a step toward sophisticated artificial cells, scientists have engineered a silicon chip that can produce proteins from DNA, the most basic function of life. The system, though relatively simple, suggests a path to mimicking life with partly manufactured components.
The new technology was described in a Science paper in August by an international collaboration led by Roy Bar-Ziv, a materials scientist at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. This research may, in the future, help advance the synthesis of such things as fuel, pharmaceuticals, chemicals and the production of enzymes [...]