Self propelled blood has been used many time in fiction to explain why rival characters cannot be killed. An example would be a manga named The Throne of Super Man (Choujin Sensen). In the manga though, the details of the process are not specified. Isaac Newton, one of the antagonists, said that he can control the speed of the blood in his body. He is one of the CARBANOIDS in the series. They are carbon based robots with personality and mental traits of the historical figure they are named after. Possible ways the could happen are the oxygen-carrying nanite particles move throughout the vessel

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    $\begingroup$ Could you still describe it? Currently you are only reaching the small group of people that have read that manga. $\endgroup$ – Raditz_35 Jan 28 '18 at 23:08
  • $\begingroup$ He's a robot? In other words, the blood isn't self-propelled, but is pumped (not unlike a human heart), but using a mechanical pump the robot has the ability to adjust the flow rate and pressure? If I as a human could do that, it would make falling asleep much simpler.... $\endgroup$ – JBH Jan 28 '18 at 23:36
  • $\begingroup$ No actually they do not have pumps, but they can control this process throughout their function. It is an odd process but I think its analogous to drones. $\endgroup$ – shawnny321 Jan 28 '18 at 23:42
  • $\begingroup$ Or Nantes. The blood cells in the robot are swimming in some kind of fluid and their movement can be controlled by the robots internal CPU. $\endgroup$ – shawnny321 Jan 28 '18 at 23:46
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    $\begingroup$ Please edit your question with the clarifications asked for in comments. It's actually quite confusing for answerers to need to hunt through comments for the latest interpretation. Thanks! $\endgroup$ – JBH Jan 28 '18 at 23:54

I'll just assume you're asking for a scientific/biological answer. That answer will most likely involve flagella. Lots of little buggers have them and it allows the tiny critters to swim about in a fluid medium.

Pros: blood cells so equipped could move under central direction to organs or systems where they're needed most. They could also be sent away from an area where they shouldn't be, a gaping wound, for example.

Cons: locomotion requires a shitload of energy, which means, even at rest, someone with fully self propelled blood is going to be expending vast amounts of calories, producing large amounts of waste heat and waste matter. Blood cells don't live long anyway, so equipping them all with the capability might not be such a good idea.

Possible solution: create one (or more) additional types of blood cells. Keep the plasma and ordinary RBC/WBC as is; but create other types of cells that are self-propelled and give them distinct functions. Perhaps some of these can be hypervigilant immune cells, seeking out and attacking cancers, foreign biologics, etc. Perhaps some can be anti-laceration first responders: whenever the local BP drops precipitously due to vessel rupture, these cells rush to the wound and begin spinning a clot. Another class might be super-oxygenators: these, when the ordinary chain of muscle metabolism is pooped out, rush out into the system with a supercharge of nutrients and oxygen.

Controlling the speed of the blood: This will still mostly be a function of heart rate. Self propelled cells might be coaxed to swim faster (or slower) depending on hormone mediation.

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  • $\begingroup$ Yes this is the type of answer I was looking for but you did not explain how the robot or the organism in question could the blood. $\endgroup$ – shawnny321 Jan 28 '18 at 23:57
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    $\begingroup$ @shawnny321 What? Your original question explicitly said that the mechanism could be "by any proccess". You asked for pros and cons and elemtilas elucidated them perfectly! $\endgroup$ – neophlegm Jan 29 '18 at 0:49
  • $\begingroup$ I don't think the extra amount of energy needed to convey the blood would be prohibitively more. To move a volume (mass) a certain distance will take up a specific amount of energy regardless of the mechanism to move it. The flagella may have some mechanical inefficiencies, but perhaps not that much. $\endgroup$ – ChP Jan 29 '18 at 15:05
  • $\begingroup$ Well, let's look at it another way. I've read that heart burns between 200 and say 500 Cal each day, circulating about 5.5L of blood three times a minute. I think that's a pretty good rate of return! A fast moving individual ciliate organism might be able to cruise along at about 400micrometres/sec or 1m in 41min. An RBC travels (passively) about 8km a day. It would take our flagellate blood cell 246 days to go that far. A ciliate paramecium uses about 0.00000001629cal/hr in moving. Assuming a similar number for one of the 30 trillion blood cells in a body: 488700cal/hr. Not a good deal! $\endgroup$ – elemtilas Jan 30 '18 at 21:38
  • $\begingroup$ NB: I am not a mathematician, so I hope I did the calculations right! Even if I did em wrong, I'd still think self-propelled blood is a bad idea, simply because it's too slow. Sure, you'd take hours to bleed out, but the brain would be starved of nutrition and oxygen long before all the blood in its capillaries got around to moving through! $\endgroup$ – elemtilas Jan 30 '18 at 21:41

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