Image: Cigarette and smoke with red background; Copyright: Ava Hosseinzadeh, Umeå University

The inflammatory trap induced by nicotine


An Umeå-based team in collaboration with US researchers reveals a new link between nicotine and inflammation.
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Image: Evolution in skulls; Copyright: Roger Seymour. Casts photographed in the South Australian Museum

Smarter brains are blood-thirsty brains


A University of Adelaide-led project has overturned the theory that the evolution of human intelligence was simply related to the size of the brain -- but rather linked more closely to the supply of blood to the brain.
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Image: 3D-image of a person, in the esophagus is one part highlighted red; Copyright:

Bad or benign? Testing cells for esophageal cancer risk


Genetically analysing lesions in the food pipe could provide an early and accurate test for oesophageal cancer, according to research led by Queen Mary University of London (QMUL), Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam and Arizona State University.
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Photo: Devices and products patients need to treat their diabetes

Artificial pancreas: an (almost) automated diabetes treatment?


The treatment for diabetes is very time-consuming for patients: they need to regularly monitor blood sugar levels, take medication and inject insulin. Poor self-management may result in a dangerous lapse in blood glucose levels. Yet external factors can also contribute to diabetes being out of control. An artificial pancreas system could offer relief.
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Photo: Keyboard with heart symbol

Big data in cardiology: IT platform to manage "flood of data"


In addition to patient counseling and clinical diagnostics, the lion’s share of a cardiologist’s work consists of collecting data to be able to better treat future cases based on the gathered information. Until now, this data was recorded in Excel spreadsheets or many other communication platforms. A software is designed to facilitate a cross-industry exchange.
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Photo: two physicians working at a test set-up

Atherosclerosis: Getting to the root of the problem with a turbo gene


Many people suffer from atherosclerosis, especially in developed countries. The buildup of fatty deposits inside the arterial blood vessels leads to strokes and heart attacks. Now, a new method is designed to get to the root of the problem, and with the help of nanoparticles inject new turbo replacement cells into the blood vessels which are intended to exert their curative effect.
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Photo: child with broken arm

Different specialties, one goal – treating children right


Children, especially newborns, are generally no longer simply considered to be small adults whose treatment just needs to be "reduced". This is why a pediatrician’s education includes several specialties because ultimately everything in terms of care comes together here.
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Photo: pipette in petri dish

Great leaps forward thanks to new methods


Self-healing powers like a superhero on the big screen? That’s the aim of regenerative medicine; at least in a very broad sense. This promising field of biomedicine is currently highly dynamic with innovative technologies and development. New methods are designed to help propel medicine into a whole new sphere.
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Photo: artificial heart valve

Artificial heart valve: "The structure is meant to be broken down again by the body at a later point."


There are various artificial heart valves available for children, but they have one essential drawback: they need to be replaced because the children are still growing. The artificial valve, on the other hand, remains the same size – and subsequently becomes too small. This is why an artificial heart valve that grows over time would be ideal.
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Photo: white implant lying in petri dish

Repairing the bile duct with bacterial nanocellulose


The closure apparatus between the gallbladder and small intestine is frequently injured during gallbladder surgeries. So far, however, there has been no surgical option to bridge tissue defects. Now, a novel implant made of bacterial nanocellulose (BNC) could change this. Its nanofiber network makes it extremely robust so that it is able to take on a supporting function.
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Fighting myomas with ultrasound


A proper diagnosis is a part of great therapy. However, it can also be beneficial to be able to quickly respond to changes during a treatment. One example of this is the treatment of uterine myomas. Female patients at the University Hospital Bonn are treated using so-called high-intensity focused ultrasound, HIFU in short. Prof. Holger Strunk explains this procedure.
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Photo: Mini organ chip

Mini synthetic organism: When the heart beats on a chip


Replicating the human organism in a mini format – researchers at the Fraunhofer IWS braved this challenge. They developed a compact system where different physical processes can be imitated on a chip. It is also possible to copy cardiac and pulmonary functions.
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Photo: Stents

Stents: Braiding versus cutting


Braided stents are nothing new in medicine, but their manufacturing process is still time-consuming. This is why Professor Stefan Jockenhövel from the RWTH Aachen University and his team want to make machine production possible.
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Statutory Skin Cancer Screening: "This is not just about mortality rates"


Since the end of April 2015, the long-awaited evaluation report on the skin cancer screening programs offered by German health insurance providers is now finally available. We spoke with Dr. Ralph von Kiedrowski, Board Member of the German Dermatologist Association (German: Berufsverband Deutscher Dermatologen) on what the screening can accomplish and his take on the G-BA report.
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Photo: Silicon model of the lung in a bluely lit water tank

Lungs: "Liquid ventilation is still not sufficiently researched"


All swimmers know the unpleasant feeling when you breathe in at the wrong time and then have water enter into your windpipe. At best, it immediately triggers the cough reflex, which is intended to keep the water away from the airways and prevent suffocation. However, liquid in the lungs can also save people - especially if it allows them to breathe again.
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Grafic: A lot of different people as comic book characters

Population study: "We want to track the study participants over many years"


How do diseases of civilization develop and can they be prevented when you know triggering factors? A new National Cohort should deliver answers in the coming years. The Leipzig Research Center for Civilization Diseases is involved in this study. We spoke with Dr. Kerstin Wirkner, who is going to co-supervise the study in Leipzig.
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Graphic: Space station

"Studies involving microgravity suggest stem cells will grow faster in space"


The International Space Station ISS is not only the largest artificial object in space. It is also a laboratory for physicists, chemists, biologists and physicians and orbits earth at 28.000 kilometers per hour at an altitude of 400 kilometers. Thanks to this location, the ISS could one day make an important contribution to regenerative medicine.
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KOHALA: digital student for cancer treatment


Shortening a time-consuming procedure from four hours to five minutes and automate it at the same time sounds like a dream come true for employees in all fields and industry sectors. This dream could soon become a reality for radiologists. Software could take away the tedious processing of CT images, which is required before cancer radiation therapy.
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"The Virus Manipulates the Host Cell on Different Levels"


Heart diseases can be triggered by special viruses that affect the cardiac muscle. Preventive drugs could definitely be developed – if the virus does not mutate.
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