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Drops of gel full of a protein mix can move themselves, mimicking a key feature of lifeMovie Camera. The mobile drops could one day have medical uses, and might help untangle the laws that govern how patterns emerge from chaos.
The drops are made from a special gel containing ingredients extracted from real cells: nano-sized protein tubes from cow brains and motor proteinsMovie Camera from bacteria. The motor proteins can "walk" along the tubes at a rate of about 8 nanometres per step, feeding on adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the same energy source they use in living bodies.
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