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  • Translator: Timothy Covell Reviewer: Morton Bast

  • Organic chemists make molecules,

  • very complicated molecules,

  • by chopping up a big molecule into small molecules

  • and reverse engineering.

  • And as a chemist,

  • one of the things I wanted to ask my research group a couple of years ago is,

  • could we make a really cool universal chemistry set?

  • In essence, could we "app" chemistry?

  • Now what would this mean, and how would we do it?

  • Well to start to do this,

  • we took a 3D printer

  • and we started to print our beakers and our test tubes on one side

  • and then print the molecule at the same time on the other side

  • and combine them together in what we call reactionware.

  • And so by printing the vessel and doing the chemistry at the same time,

  • we may start to access this universal toolkit of chemistry.

  • Now what could this mean?

  • Well if we can embed biological and chemical networks like a search engine,

  • so if you have a cell that's ill that you need to cure

  • or bacteria that you want to kill,

  • if you have this embedded in your device

  • at the same time, and you do the chemistry,

  • you may be able to make drugs in a new way.

  • So how are we doing this in the lab?

  • Well it requires software, it requires hardware

  • and it requires chemical inks.

  • And so the really cool bit is,

  • the idea is that we want to have a universal set of inks

  • that we put out with the printer,

  • and you download the blueprint, the organic chemistry for that molecule

  • and you make it in the device.

  • And so you can make your molecule in the printer using this software.

  • So what could this mean?

  • Well, ultimately, it could mean that you could print your own medicine.

  • And this is what we're doing in the lab at the moment.

  • But to take baby steps to get there,

  • first of all we want to look at drug design and production,

  • or drug discovery and manufacturing.

  • Because if we can manufacture it after we've discovered it,

  • we could deploy it anywhere.

  • You don't need to go to the chemist anymore.

  • We can print drugs at point of need.

  • We can download new diagnostics.

  • Say a new super bug has emerged.

  • You put it in your search engine,

  • and you create the drug to treat the threat.

  • So this allows you on-the-fly molecular assembly.

  • But perhaps for me the core bit going into the future

  • is this idea of taking your own stem cells,

  • with your genes and your environment,

  • and you print your own personal medicine.

  • And if that doesn't seem fanciful enough,

  • where do you think we're going to go?

  • Well, you're going to have your own personal matter fabricator.

  • Beam me up, Scotty.

  • (Applause)

Translator: Timothy Covell Reviewer: Morton Bast

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B1 US TED chemistry print molecule printer search engine

【TED】Lee Cronin: Print your own medicine (Lee Cronin: Print your own medicine)

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    Zenn posted on 2017/07/25
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