Bacterial Ink Tattoo to Help Monitor Health.

Engineers from MIT have created a 3D printed tattoo made from genetically programmed living cells that activate when exposed to different types of stimuli.

The bacterial ink tattoo would be used to help detect certain illnesses or sensitivities.

The tattoos are made with a gelatinous material called hydrogel in combination with 3D printed cells. Because the makeup of hydrogels is like bacteria it makes them ideal for printing. Each line is then made with a different type of bacteria, resembling a tree.

To signal a reaction, certain lines from the tattoo would light up when it is exposed to different chemicals.

Graduate student and co-author Hyunwoo Yek comments, “This is very future work, but we expect to be able to print living computational platforms that could be wearable”.

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