RABAT, NETRALNEWS.COM - Scientists have created a robot to extract venom from scorpions faster and safer than ever. Extracting scorpion venom is a very difficult task and there are many risks, including a deadly scorpion sting and electric shock from the stimulator used to extract the poison.
Therefore, scientists have created a robot to perform the dangerous task. Scorpion venom is used in a number of medical fields, including cancer research. The venom is usually extracted manually through a potentially lethal process.
"This robot makes the recovery of venoms fast and safe," said Mouad Mkamel, who designed the robot with a team of researchers from Hassan II University, Ben M'sik, Morocco, as quoted from Wired.
In order for the whole process to be more secure, the researchers designed the VES-4, a lightweight portable robot that can be used both in the laboratory and in the field.
"It's designed to extract scorpions without endangering animals and provide more security for researchers," explains Mkamel.
The current method of scorpion milking can be harmful to researchers, due to electrical shock from equipment, and to arachnids, where there is a risk of piercing the poison glands or damaging the stomach. The robot works by clamping the tail of the scorpion and electrically stimulating the creature so that it can generate the venom droplets, which are then collected and stored.
"VES-4 can be used by one person by using the remote control to be able to restore the scorpion safely from a distance," said Mkamel.
This robot has been tested on several species of scorpions and can be programmed with special settings for different species, with information displayed on the LED screen.