opsin

Genetic Engineering
5:49 pm
Mon April 8, 2013

Wash U Researchers Trick Cells Into Moving Toward Light

Opsin (red dots) in an immune cell prompts it to move toward a light beam (blue bar).
Credit (via WashU/copyright PNAS)

Researchers at Washington University have genetically-engineered cells to react to light.

By taking light-sensing receptors from the eye — called opsins — and inserting them into immune cells, the researchers were able to trick the cells into moving toward a laser beam, in the same way they would move toward a bacterial infection.

Washington University molecular biologist N. Gautam led the research.

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