Single-living Cell Engineered to Emit Laser Light

A single-living cell has been engineered to emit laser light.  The process involved the manipulation of human and jellyfish cells, as reported by Nature Photonics.

The light-emitting protein is found in jellyfish called GFP or green fluorescent protein.  It has enabled scientists to foresee many potential applications.  It serves as a “torch” in living systems.  It would help view microscopic objects–lighting them up and allowing for unprecedented visible observation.  The living cell accomplishes feats even more impressive than that.

The laser cells are also self-healing.  If they were to be damaged during tests, they would be able to produce more protein.  The cells also survive before and after various tests.  They simply do not perish at the conclusion of its use.  If bathed in blue light and placed between two mirrors, the light the cells emit are amplified, canvasing the entire cell and the organism or tissue it is placed in.

One can see the benefits of such a breakthrough.  This has widened biological research considerably.  Now never before seen areas of human and animal bodies can be explored.  Corridors in biological systems can now be lit up and analyzed.  Scientists close to the report stated, “For light-based therapeutics, diagnosis and imaging, people think about how to deliver emission from an external laser source deep into tissue. Now we can approach this problem in another way: by amplifying light in the tissue (itself)”.

This technique and others similar to it will help science and medicine move forward.  Experiments like these provide examples of how more than just finding cures for diseases and sicknesses are going into the understanding of biological beings.  It will be essential for holistic approaches like this to be always intrinsic to the field of biology.       



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