We hear about locusts most often in the negative context of destroying crops and contributing to famine in Asia and Africa, but this may soon change and it is not at all o EU approved Potato Chips for sale in shops. We’ve been hearing about the modified Sapper support locusts for a while now, and now they’re joining them too Locusts – cyborgs capable of detecting tumors by smell – So it seems so Not only dogs and ants can help us with early diagnosis.

How is this even possible? Scientists believe that Some animals are able to detect changes in body odor and breathing caused by certain chemicals It appears in people with the disease. It’s very accurate, because we’re literally talking about one molecule per trillion, so humans have no chance of observing it, but by all means a dog or a locust – but training the former is very expensive (and the robotic reconstruction of them turns out to be a very difficult nose) so scientists resorted to a solution More cost effective.

Debagit Saha and him The Michigan State University team decided to literally hack the brains of locustsTo achieve their goal, the results of their work are described in a work published in the journal bioRXiv. To this end, these organs have been surgically modified by placing electrodes in their lobes, the purpose of which is to pick up signals from antennas used to sense odors.

To train the system, the team also grew Three types of human oral cancer cells And a group of healthy cells and developed a device to capture the gases emitted from these tissues. With the help of the latter, the e-locusts could smell all the cells, and, as it turned out, their brains reacted to each differently, without any problems recognizing diseased cells.

Does this mean that we will soon be able to go to the nearest clinic or hospital to check our health with e-locusts? Certainly, nothing will happen soon in this regard, because the system requires the approval of the relevant regulators, and It raises some ethical questions.

Because even though we talk about cyber locusts all the time, you must realize that it is only about them Modified brains, artificially kept alive by researchersWhich not everyone is willing to accept.

However, the team intends to continue their work by focusing on improving the system’s performance – in its current form it requires 6 to 10 locust brains to function efficiently, and the scientists hope the new electrodes will reduce their numbers. Moreover, they are also planning to model Mobile, thanks to which they will be able to conduct tests in real conditionsoutside the lab.

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