Wireless sensor nodes (WSN) have been used for decades to measure physical and environmental conditions. Small, low power, wearable sensors to monitor a patient's heart, muscle, or brain activity as they conducted their daily activities has been more challenging to develop. That is until now.
Unlike many vaccines, the shot for influenza needs yearly updating. Howard Hughes Medical Institute scientists have discovered a human antibody that recognizes many different flu strains and could be the basis for a longer-lasting vaccine.
A new alloy developed by a team of researchers, including the National Energy Technology Laboratory, is helping cardiologists and their patients at home and abroad. The novel platinum-chromium (PtCr) alloy is being used by Boston Scientific Corporation to manufacture coronary stents that are more flexible and conformable than existing stents, and more visible on X-ray.
A team of scientists at Kyoto University has reported producing viable sperm using the stem cells of mice in an experiment that researchers hope could one day lead to treating infertile men.
A winner of a 2011 R&D 100 Award, the new platinum-chromium alloy from development teams at Boston Scientific Corporation and the National Energy Technology Laboratory may finally displace 316L stainless steel, which has been successfully used for years but lacks the flexibility and thinness required to be used in some arteries.
Implanted biological materials easily mimic the texture of soft tissues, but usually are broken down by the body too fast. Synthetic materials are typically rejected by the body. Researchers at Johns Hopkins University have built a new injectable composite material that combines both biological and synthetic molecules in the hopes of overcoming both problems.
A single compound with dual function?the ability to deliver a diagnostic and therapeutic agent?may one day be used to enhance the diagnosis, imaging and treatment of brain tumors. A nanoparticle called a metallofullerine served as the basis for this research at Virginia Commonwealth University and Virginia Tech.
By coating gold nanoparticles with antibodies that bind to specific strains of the flu virus and then measuring how the particles scatter laser light, a new technology from the University of Georgia can detect influenza in minutes at a cost of only a fraction of a penny per exam.
Akin to the litmus paper used in chemistry labs around the world to detect the pH of a liquid, a new device developed by Harvard University investigators changes color when it encounters a liquid with a particular surface tension. Capitalizing on the 3D capabilities of the porous material called inverse opal, the chip also has secretive double function.
Ischemia, in which tissue deprived of oxygen, is a serious health condition that can lead to damaged organs or amputation. A new artificial structure has been built, however, that, like the natural protein it mimics, can trigger a cascade of complex events that promote the growth of new blood vessels.
Engineers and physicians at Cornell University and Weill Cornell Medical College have collaborated on the development of a biologically-based spinal implant that relies on two different forms of polymer, collagen and hydrogel.
It may take more than willpower to stick to a diet. A researcher at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine has discovered what happens to the brain when the body is hungry, and it involves a bizarre process of autophagy, or self-eating.
A new optical coherence tomography technology developed by a Massachusetts Institute of Technology team has made it possible for users of endoscopy to see below the surface of the colon or esophagus to image microscopic pre-cancerous changes. Traditional screening methods were unable to offer this information.
Using a so-called Langendorff heart?an isolated rodent heart flushed with a nutrient solution in place of blood?scientists from Germany were for the first time able to show that nanoparticles have a clearly measurable effect on the heart.
Engineering researchers at four U.S. universities are embarking on a four-year project to design a prosthetic arm that amputees can control directly with their brains and that will allow them to feel what they touch. While it may sound like science fiction, the researchers say much of the technology has already been proven in small-scale demonstrations.
An artificial lung built by researchers at Case Western has reached efficiencies akin to the genuine organ, using air--not pure oxygen as current man-made lungs require--for the source of the essential element. The developers are targeting clinical trials within the decade.
The next 14 months will bring generic versions of seven of the world's 20 best-selling drugs, including the top two: cholesterol fighter Lipitor and blood thinner Plavix. Generic competition will decimate sales of the brand-name drugs and cut costs to patients and companies that provide health benefits.
Using nanotechnology to anchor sensors to the membranes of individual cells, researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital have developed a platform technology for monitoring single-cell interactions as they happen. The breakthrough could be a key technology in personalized medicine.
An Atlanta-based company, DigitalVision, is perfecting its next-generation optometry and opthamology instrument with the help of Georgia Tech. The VisionOptimizer, with its 24-inch telescope-grade mirror, is intended to provide more accurate vision measurements, along with a more patient-friendly and engaging vision test.
On the heels of research at the University of Maryland on color-shifting lenses comes another eyeglass innovation that combines sensors and miniaturized electronics to block bright glare. A pinhole camera mounted in the frame analyzes incoming light and sends signals to change the shade of the liquid crystal displays that reside in the lenses. The whole process takes 50 milliseconds.
Tissue engineering has improved dramatically in recent years, but forming structures or scaffolds that allow the body to use its own cells to rebuild structure is still a difficult process, especially when no endogenous material is available for transplants. Scientists in Germany say they have improved this process by producing biomimetic scaffolds that closely emulate the tissues found within the body.
The factors controlling degeneration of the human brain are still mostly unknown. However, researchers in Germany have found a function for the previously mysterious cannabinoid-1 receptor. In experiments with mice, they switched off this receptor and the animals showed signs of degeneration, as seen in people with dementia, much faster than normal.
Sunburns can be painful, but until now scientists weren’t sure what exactly was behind the hurting. Recent findings on proteins known as chemokines has found that ultraviolet B irradiation of these molecules can trigger inflammatory symptoms in nerve fibers. The findings could lead to drugs that block the activity of this molecule.
The June 9 surgery performed at Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm represents the first synthetic tissue engineered windpipe that has been successfully transplanted. The windpipe was built with a bioreactor and scaffold using the patient’s own stem cells. The success of operation has prompted plans for similar transplants in the near future.
Cataracts are the leading cause of preventable blindness worldwide. But the standard test to detect the cloudy patches in the eye's lens requires a $5,000 piece of equipment called a slit lamp, and a trained physician to interpret its results. Now a team of MIT researchers has developed a simple device that can clip onto an ordinary smartphone (or smart device such as an iPod) and provide a diagnosis of cataracts within a few minutes.