Xenobots: The world’s first living machines

The scientists came up with a new lifeform, the xenobots. The xenobots are the world’s first living robots. The scientists use stem cells of the African clawed frog to create these robots. These robots can swim, walk, and also heal themselves.

Xenobots: world's first living robots
Xenobots: world’s first living robots

Furthermore, These machines are very small in size, we can say less than 0.05 inches wide. These are living tissues and computer algorithms that design its shape. These robots can survive inside the human body for weeks without food and can work independently or in groups.

In addition, scientists use stem cells as these cells have the ability to convert into different cell types. Scientists then incubate these cells in the lab and shape them using algorithms.

The working of the world’s first living robots

The xenobots are not traditional robots, these are living programmable machines. So, these robots are autonomous and there is no remote control or electricity to control them.

The xenobots entirely evolve by the algorithm. The xenobots grow from skin and heart stem cells into tissue clumps. So, these tissue clumps consist of hundreds of cells that can move by pulses generated by heart muscle cells. These bots have self-healing mechanisms like animals.

These are biological machines and look like a tissue. Hence, they have a very deliberate mechanism at work. So, this is a new breakthrough. However, even the evolution of these xenobots is entirely done by an algorithm.


The scientists give restrictions to the supercomputer regarding the xenobot. The restrictions include maximum muscle power and its movement in a liquid environment. The algorithm then creates generations of these bots virtually and test them against restrictions. As a result, only successful bots continue to evolve and computer deletes unsuccessful bots. This works exactly the same as evolution in nature.

Xenobots: world's first living robots
world’s first living robots: Computer simulation of aLiving Organisem

As time goes by the algorithm finally creates designs that can actually transfer to living cells. So, finally, we can get 3d shapes that power itself on its own, and the credit goes to the evolution algorithm.

Furthermore, the beating cells from the heart propel this structure in a specific direction while the skin cells create a covering, keeping its shape. However, when these tiny bots cut into the half, they can heal themselves automatically.

The application

The world’s first living bots are very useful when it comes to application. First of all, they can keep themselves going without food for days. This single feature can open many possibilities. We can use them for delivering drugs inside the body. We can also send them inside the arteries to clean up.

Furthermore, they are eco-friendly. They don’t create any hazardous waste. Xenobots don’t degrade over time like traditional robots. Even we can use them in recovering oil spills in the ocean. We can also utilize them in radioactive contamination zones to clean up.

In conclusion, the world’s first living robots are a breakthrough in science and it opens immense possibilities in almost all the fields.

Images and video courtesy: University of Vermont

Watch worlds first living robot in action

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