Bringing biological robots a step closer to reality
Biocompatible microrobots capable of autonomous movement will find many biomedical applications, including drug delivery. Enzymes have emerged as attractive actuators of microrobot self-propulsion due to their ability to convert substrates into products. The EU-funded DNA-bots project is a nanotechnology-driven initiative that proposes to develop enzyme-powered nanorobots. These robots will further integrate DNA nanoswitches, sensors which undergo a predefined conformational change upon binding a target sequence. The idea is that these biocompatible and biodegradable nanorobotic devices will be able to respond specifically to certain stimuli with great efficacy and sensitivity and release their cargo.