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September 29th, 2023 by Conn Hastings
Researchers at Pohang University of Science & Technology in South Korea have developed a durable strain sensor that can detect complex body movements. The technology will be useful for patients undergoing physical rehabilitation, allowing physical therapists to assess their movements in significant detail and measure progress. Conventional strain sensors are often affected by heat and humidity, making them less durable as a wearable, and they typically detect only biaxial strain, providing less detail than these new sensors. The new technology uses computer vision, whereby an algorithm reviews digital images of...Read More
Researchers at Oxford University have developed a tiny battery that can power small implantable devices, such as drug delivery technologies. The new battery is inspired by the ionic gradients that electric eels use to generate electricity. It involves tiny droplets of a conductive hydrogel that are placed near each other. Each droplet has a different ionic concentration, meaning that ions will flow from high concentration droplets to low concentration droplets. When the researchers connect electrodes to this chain of droplets they can harness the energy generated by this ion gradient...Read More

September 26th, 2023 by Conn Hastings
Researchers at the University of California San Francisco have developed an implantable bioreactor that may pave the way for artificial kidneys. Dialysis and kidney transplants both have significant disadvantages for patients with kidney failure, and so scientists are trying to develop a lab created kidney that would not require harsh immunosuppression or a donor kidney. This implantable bioreactor may be a step in the right direction, and it includes a type of cell found in the kidney which is protected from the immune system behind a silicon membrane. Blood can...Read More

September 26th, 2023 by Conn Hastings
Researchers at the University of Texas at Austin have developed an electroencephalogram (EEG) sensor that is incorporated into a virtual reality headset. The technology can measure brain activity while someone is undergoing an immersive virtual reality experience. The device may assist in enhancing medical virtual reality interventions, such as those used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder or phobias, by revealing brain activity during different tasks or experiences that help clinicians to tailor treatment plans to maximize efficacy. The electrodes are soft and spongy, which makes them comfortable against the head,...Read More
Researchers at RMIT in Australia have developed a drug-free approach to kill bacteria and fungi that can infect surfaces on medical implants. Such pathogens can cause serious and difficult-to-treat infections around medical implants, sometimes requiring the removal of the implant. In addition, many microbes are increasingly resistant to common antibiotics, highlighting the need for drug-free approaches. This new technique is inspired by the nanopillars present on dragonfly wings, which can skewer microbial cells, killing them. The researchers used a relatively simple plasma etching technique to create such nanopillars on titanium...Read More
Researchers at the Terasaki Institute in Los Angeles have developed a new method to create 3D printed muscle constructs with enhanced muscle cell alignment and maturation. The technique involves creating microparticles loaded with insulin-like growth factor (IGF) using a microfluidic platform. Then, these particles are included in a bioink that also incorporates myoblast cells and a gelatin-based hydrogel. Once 3D printed, the resulting constructs show enhanced cell growth, elongation, and alignment, and in some cases even began to spontaneously contract after a ten day incubation. The Terasaki researchers hope that...Read More

September 19th, 2023 by Conn Hastings
Researchers at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore have developed a tiny, flexible battery that is intended for use in smart contact lenses. The device is as thin as the human cornea and can be charged by a saline solution, which is particularly useful in the eye, as it is full of salty tears. When the battery-equipped smart lens is not in use, such as at night, then it can be stored in a saline solution, helping to further recharge the battery. The device avoids materials that could cause damage to...Read More

September 19th, 2023 by Conn Hastings
Researchers at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus have developed a technique that may spot the very early signs of Alzheimer’s disease, years before symptoms arise. The method may alert patients and clinicians to an increased risk of the disease, potentially allowing them to take steps to slow the disease progression. The method involves using a simple EEG headband while sleeping. The researchers have identified EEG signatures in aging adults that may indicate early Alzheimer’s pathology. These EEG phenomena relate to memory reactivation that occurs during sleep, and may...Read More

September 19th, 2023 by Conn Hastings
Researchers at ETH Zurich have developed an insulin delivery system that relies on music as a trigger. The unusual technology is based on calcium ion channels that typically reside in the cell membrane. Such channels are sensitive to mechanical deformation and these researchers discovered that sound waves will activate the channels. When insulin-producing cells are genetically modified to express this channel, they will experience an influx in calcium ions when music is played close by, prompting them to release insulin. The concept could be useful as a treatment for diabetes,...Read More
Researchers at the University of California San Francisco have developed a brain computer interface that can lets someone with severe paralysis communicate with both speech and facial expressions, in the form of a digital avatar. The breakthrough advances what has been possible, with previous brain computer interface systems providing speech only, and allows people to communicate more completely, encompassing facial expressions, which are an important aspect of natural communication. The system includes electrodes that intercept brain signals that are intended for the muscles of the face, essentially decoding complex facial...Read More
Researchers at the National University of Singapore have developed a highly sensitive pressure sensor that can provide haptic feedback for surgeons using laparoscopic tools or for use in robotic grippers as part of robotic surgical systems. The technology is inspired by the surface of the lotus leaf, which is extremely sensitive to the pressure exerted by tiny drops of water and will repel them. This sensor is also highly sensitive, using an incorporated layer of air to detect tiny pressure changes, and a surface coating inside to reduce friction. Called...Read More

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Medicine

Implantable Bioreactor for Kidney Cells

Researchers at the University of California San Francisco have developed an implantable bioreactor that may pave the way for artificial kidneys. Dialysis and kidney... September 26th, 2023

Cardiology

3D Printed Heart Muscle Beats

Researchers at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences have developed a technique that allows them to 3D print a heart ventricle,... August 22nd, 2023

Surgery

Implantable Bioreactor for Kidney Cells

Researchers at the University of California San Francisco have developed an implantable bioreactor that may pave the way for artificial kidneys. Dialysis and kidney... September 26th, 2023

Emergency Medicine

Smartphone Camera Measures Blood Oxygen

At the University of Washington a research team has developed a smartphone system that can measure blood oxygen levels. The technology uses the camera and flash of... September 21st, 2022

Radiology

Anesthesiology

Smartphone Camera Measures Blood Oxygen

At the University of Washington a research team has developed a smartphone system that can measure blood oxygen levels. The technology uses the camera and flash of... September 21st, 2022