Tiny molecular machine apes cellular production line

Manchester scientists have developed a tiny molecular machine that mirrors the function of the ribosome, which builds the proteins in our body's cells.

Just a few millionths of a millimetre in size, the minute machine resembles a ring threaded on a rod.

As this ring moves along the rod, it picks chemical units and assembles them into chains, just as ribosomes join up the building blocks of proteins.

The ultimate goal is to synthesize new drug molecules or new types of plastic.


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