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Researchers at the University of Washington have developed a low-cost hearing test for newborns. Traditionally, the equipment for such testing is quite expensive. As newborns cannot let us know if they can hear something, the test is based on creating a noise within the ear canal and then listening to the vibrations created by the specialized hair cells within. The UW researchers used cheap earbuds that are connected to a small microphone that can listen to the vibrations of the hair cells. A smartphone app then analyzes the sounds and...Read More
Scientists at the University of Eastern Finland have developed a technique that lets them improve the coating of nanoparticles when using cell membranes. Cell membranes offer a lot of benefits as a coating for synthetic nanoparticles, including shielding from the immune system, prolonged circulation times and improved tumor accumulation. However, current approaches to coating nanoparticles with cell membranes often result in an incomplete covering. These researchers realized that a simple technique involving adding some additional phospholipids during production was enough to increase the membrane fluidity of the coating, allowing it...Read More
Researchers at the University of Sydney in Australia have developed an electrospun blood vessel replacement. The material contains tropoelastin, a natural precursor for elastin, a key component of blood vessel walls. Elastin is present in concentric circles in natural blood vessels and provides the elastic properties which allow them to distend slightly and then reform their original shape in response to changes in blood flow and blood pressure. This latest construct allows similar layers of elastin to form when implanted into the body, and over time the grafted vessel appears...Read More

November 7th, 2022 by Conn Hastings
Researchers at the University of Arizona have developed a battery-free light-powered pacemaker that uses optogenetic stimulation of cardiomyocytes to achieve heart pacing. With conventional pacemakers, the leads of the device are anchored into the wall of the heart, using invasive hooks or screws. Small electrical shocks are then sent through the entire heart, potentially causing discomfort and pain. The new light-based pacemaker relies on four “petals” that wrap around the heart non-invasively, and uses light to stimulate genetically-modified cardiomyocytes to contract. The technology is primarily useful for cardiac research in...Read More
Medical Microinstruments, a medtech company with offices in Pisa, Italy and Delaware, USA, has developed the Symani Microsurgical Robot. The robotic system is designed to assist with microsurgical procedures, and it boasts a variety of advanced features to achieve this goal. These include a suite of the world’s smallest wristed surgical instruments, tremor reducing technology, and motion scaling (7-20X), to allow surgeons to perform very small and precise movements. The company has also paired with a software company to develop a surgical simulator to help with training surgeons on the...Read More

November 3rd, 2022 by Conn Hastings
At the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, researchers have developed micelle technology that can detect minute amounts of SARS-CoV-2 in the air. This new capability could provide invaluable monitoring systems to detect viral contamination in healthcare facilities and beyond. Micelles are somewhat similar to liposomes in that they are both like tiny lipid bubbles. In this instance, the researchers incorporated molecularly imprinted polymer molecules into the wall of the micelles. These molecularly imprinted molecules can bind to the viral spike protein. On viral binding, the polymer molecules cause the micelle to...Read More

November 3rd, 2022 by Conn Hastings
Scientists at ETH Zurich in Switzerland have unveiled a technique that weaponizes bacterial cells against tumors. The approach involves using bacteria called Magnetospirillum that are naturally magnetic by virtue of the iron oxide particles they contain. The researchers use a rotating magnetic field applied at the tumor location from outside the body to help draw the bacteria through gaps in the walls of tumor blood vessels. At present, the technique has been explored as a proof-of-concept, but in the future it may be possible to attach anti-cancer drug-loaded nanoparticles to...Read More
A team of researchers at the University of Tsukuba in Japan has developed a fluffy soft robot that patients can interact with to reduce their stress and fear when undergoing painful or uncomfortable medical procedures. For some patients, particularly children, a fear of needles or uncomfortable and painful procedures can make such experiences especially challenging, and may mean that they attempt to avoid treatment altogether. Finding ways to calm and reassure such patients is important in reducing their distress and enabling them to undergo necessary treatment. The robot has inflatable...Read More
Avenda Health, a medtech company based in Santa Monica, California has developed the FocalPoint ablation system, an AI-powered prostate cancer therapy. The system is designed to provide localized prostate cancer treatment and its AI system equips clinicians with a map of a patient’s cancer, along with treatment simulations to help them chose the best course of action.    The goal behind the system is to effectively treat the tumor, but preserve as much of the healthy tissue as possible, thereby maximizing patient chances at retaining full urinary and sexual function....Read More
Scientists at Nara Institute of Science and Technology in Japan have come up with a method to rapidly determine the antibiotic susceptibility of a bacterial sample, such as a patient sample from a non-healing infected wound. The technique is based on impedance cytometry, which involves a high-throughput single cell analysis of the bacterial cells. The impedance system measures the dielectric properties of the cells as they flow through the device, and it can assess up to 1000 cells per minute. Using machine learning to determine the differences in the dielectric...Read More

October 31st, 2022 by Conn Hastings
Researchers at MIT have developed a sensor system that can provide data on how well a face mask fits to a wearer’s face. The protection offered by a mask is largely dependent on how well it fits the face, but at present most face masks are one-size-fits-all and most wearers are largely unaware if their mask is providing maximal protection. This latest technology is an adhesive polymer frame containing a range of sensors. The device can be affixed to any surgical mask and will provide information on mask fit, along...Read More

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Medicine

Camera Measures Blood Pressure with Quick Look

At the University of South Australia, researchers designed a system that allows them to measure a patient’s blood pressure with a camera. The camera visualizes... December 7th, 2022

Cardiology

Camera Measures Blood Pressure with Quick Look

At the University of South Australia, researchers designed a system that allows them to measure a patient’s blood pressure with a camera. The camera visualizes... December 7th, 2022

Surgery

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