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    • CommentTimeMay 21st 2008 edited

    The first artificial virus was created in 2003 — to cure people, not kill them. A virus can deliver cures to cells just as easily as it delivers death. The problem with artificial viruses is that no one has been able to make them the proper shape to serve as a therapeutic delivery system. But now, Korean scientists have created a virus that could deliver a remedy directly to a patient's cells with far greater efficiency than past attempts. The key lies in those Lovecraftian tentacles extending from the virus.

    The Korean researchers used nanotechnology to build the shape of the virus, then added self-assembling molecules. The result: an artificial virus with the filament shapes seen in the image. Such a shape will allow it to last longer inside a person's body.

    Why is this important? Medication delivered directly to cells with an artificial virus is like using a professional assassin to take out your target. By comparison, conventional medication techniques are more like running around a city firing a shotgun in random directions. The other major bonus? That thing totally looks like some kind of microscopic spawn of Cthulhu.


    Oh, what took them so long?
  1.  (2313.2)
    It's looks like something an eight year old would draw after meeting Cthulu whilst listening to Lee Scratch Perry and imbibing some liquid acid.
    Look forward to hearing about it in action!
  2.  (2313.3)
    Oh gee, artificial virii.

    THANKS, science. This isn't going to be a terrible idea, no sir-ee.
    • CommentAuthorAnopheles
    • CommentTimeMay 23rd 2008 edited
    Nice. I wonder how they control its replication and any resultant dna or rna mutation? Does it even have genetic material?

    Looking forward to application research. With the right work, you could tailor it to an individual's antigens, and have them become a permanent fixture of the immune system, keyed to collect specific chemicals and medicines (delivered the normal means or whatever) and bring them to the correct sites in the body.

  3.  (2313.5)
    Soon my cyborg-cell army will be legion.
    • CommentTimeMay 23rd 2008
    Suddenly, all I can think of is that 'five ways a Zombie apocalypse could scientifically happen' article...