facebook Scientists recreate Mona Lisa painting using live bacteria - Vigyaa
Close

Delete Collection?

Are you sure you want to delete this collection permanently?

Close

Delete Collection?

Are you sure you want to delete this collection permanently?

Everyone has a Story to Tell and an Experience to Share!

Let’s Start Writing
91435387-4c6f-464b-be05-f6a083a5cb07

772 views

Scientists recreate Mona Lisa painting using live bacteria

The researchers used light patterns to control the swimming speed of bacteria and direct them to form different shapes.

718378-453820-298560-mona

Scientists have created an accurate millimetric replica of Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa, using approximately one million bacteria cells that were genetically engineered to respond to light.

The researchers used light patterns to control the swimming speed of bacteria and direct them to form different shapes.

Controlling bacteria in this way means it could be possible to use them as microbricks for building the next generation of microscopic devices.

For example, they could be made to surround a larger object such as a machine part or a drug carrier, and then used as living propellers to transport it where it is needed, researchers said.

Escherichia coli (E coli) bacteria are known to be fantastic swimmers. They can move a distance of ten times their length in a second. They have propellers that are powered by a motor, and they usually recharge this motor by a process that needs oxygen.

Recently, scientists found a protein (proteorhodopsin) in ocean-dwelling bacteria that allows them to power their propellers using light.

By engineering other types of bacteria to have this protein, it is possible to place a 'solar panel' on every bacterial cell and control its swimming speed remotely with light.

"Much like pedestrians who slow down their walking speed when they encounter a crowd, or cars that are stuck in traffic, swimming bacteria will spend more time in slower regions than in faster ones," said Giacomo Frangipane, Postdoctoral Scientist at Rome University in the Italy.

"We wanted to exploit this phenomenon to see if we could shape the concentration of bacteria using light," Frangipane said.

To do this, researchers sent light from a projector through a microscope lens, shaping the light with high resolution, and explored how E coli bacteria alter their speed while swimming through regions with varying degrees of illumination.

They projected the light uniformly onto a layer of bacterial cells for five minutes, before exposing them to a more complex light pattern -- a negative image of the Mona Lisa.

They found that bacteria started to concentrate in the dark regions of the image while moving out from the more illuminated areas.

After four minutes, a recognisable bacterial replica of Leonardo da Vinci's painting could be seen, with brighter areas corresponding to regions of accumulated bacterial cells.

"We have shown how the suspension of swimming bacteria could lead to a new class of light-controllable active materials whose density can be shaped accurately, reversibly and quickly using a low-power light projector," said Roberto Di Leonardo, an associate professor at Rome University.

"With further engineering, the bacteria could be used to create solid biomechanical structures or novel microdevices for the transport of small biological cargoes inside miniaturised laboratories," said Di Leonardo.



Related Articles

Are you tired of doing card-making and scrapbooking? Cheer up! We have a unique crafting idea for making wooden embellishments. You can use these embellishments in your own handmade cards, scrapbook pages, or art journals. Also, you can create wooden ornaments for your home or yourself using this method. You can create these adornments by using stamping techniques on wooden discs or any other wooden shape. For this, you can buy stamps for card-making from an online store at a great deal and also check out their latest promotions.

None

Materials Required - Wooden discs or wooden surfaces of any other shape, rubber stamps, and ink pads.

Which Stamp to Pick?

You can choose any rubber stamp of your choice, mounted or unmounted, keeping the size of the surface you want to stamp on in mind. If the stamp does not fit the wooden surface then the image will not look good and attractive. And also, you can use the same stamps as the ones you use for card-making to make an attractive and abstract image.

Stamping on Wooden Discs

We have chosen wooden discs as they are ideal for stamping, you can use any other wooden shape of your choice if you like. Make sure to select the wood wisely as the porous surface of the untreated wood can cause the ink or colors to bleed through. It is also better to practice stamping on rough sheets or other unknown surfaces before stamping on wooden discs. After enough practice, take the stamps, add some dark color ink, and stamp it on the discs. If you see ink running through the grains of the wood, then paint the surface of the wood to seal the pores.

When you do this, put even pressure from all sides so that the image does not look smudged or blotchy. Also, you need to be very careful with your fingers while stamping to make sure that the disc does not slip. Afterward, leave the piece to dry for some time.

Add a Finishing Touch

You can leave the stamped images on the wooden discs uncolored so that the wood is seen through. And if you want to color the image, then first check if the color bleeds or else, it will have a distorted and unfinished effect on the image. You can use color pencils or chalk to color as they are dry colors and won’t run through the grains. Seal the piece with a clear varnish to protect the image on wood.  

Reference Image
Close