Wei Gao

Assistant Professor of Medical Engineering,
Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences
California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA

Synthetic Micro/Nanorobots: From Test Tubes to Live Animals

The development of efficient nano/microscale machines will benefit a variety of biomedical applications. I will discuss the development of various synthetic micro/nanorobots that can be propelled via localized chemical reactions and external stimuli such as magnetic field. The applications such micro/nanorobots toward biosensing, bioisolation, and targeted drug delivery will be introduced. I will also cover our recent work on photoacoustic computed tomography (PACT)–guided micromotors for targeted delivery in vivo. The migration of micromotor capsules toward the targeted regions in the intestines has been visualized by PACT in real-time in vivo. Such imaged guided microrobotic system enables deep imaging and precise control of the micromotors in vivo and opens the door to new in vivo and clinical applications of synthetic motors.