Should we be concerned or fascinated by this latest experiment?
Scientists successfully added human skin cells to a robot finger. The skin form fit to the electronic skeleton. Our characteristic folds and wrinkles quickly formed.
The skin can even heal using collagen bandages. Astronauts on the International Space Station recently tested similar first aid bioprinting technology. One limitation is that the skin cells will dry out since they’re not connected to the rest of our human systems. They require a moisturizing liquid goo bath in between uses, as shown below.
According to a news release from EurekAlert, the scientists next plan to add other elements to the skin. Including hair follicles and nails as well as a sense of touch and even sweat glands. They also mention working on skin cells to cover robotic faces as a future focus of study. We learned about this research from The Guardian. More (slightly phallic) pictures and videos are available through the open-access peer-reviewed journal Matter that published the study.
Photo | iStock