Image: Pictured is a fluorescently labeled endothelial cell monolayer, pseudocolorized in blue/green; Copyright: University of Pittsburgh

Gene therapy via ultrasound could offer new therapeutic tool

23/08/2016

Combining ultrasound energy and microbubbles to poke holes in cells may prove to be a new tool in the fight against cardiovascular disease and cancer, according to researchers from the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC. A study on this gene therapy approach, called sonoporation, is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
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Image: Bacteria are flowing to hospital's entrance; Copyright: Panthermedia.net/lightsource

New maths to predict dangerous hospital epidemics

18/08/2016

Mathematicians are now developing completely new statistical calculations on the world’s fastest computers in order to be able to predict how epidemics of dangerous hospital bacteria spread. Studying the entire genomes of bacteria has now thrown open entirely new possibilities for revealing their secrets. It is this genetic knowledge that scientists use to understand bacterial epidemics.
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Image: Migrating pioneer neurons under the phase contrast microscope, selectively stained by a fluorescence dye; Copyright: TiHo

Novel test method to replace animal testing

17/08/2016

Testing the impact of chemo toxicity on the human development without having to resort to animal testing: To get closer to this goal, the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, Foundation (TiHo) and the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) are developing a new in-situ test method to examine the hazardous potential of chemical substances.
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Image: Gloved hand holds a piece of white fleece; Copyright: Hohenstein Institute

Wound dressings made from bacterial alginate

10/08/2016

Researchers have succeeded in mapping out for the first time a complete production and treatment process, from using biotechnology to produce bacterial alginate, right through to producing fibres and manufacturing textile materials.
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Image: design of nanocarriers; Copyright: University of Pennsylvania

Penn researchers improve computer modeling for designing drug-delivery nanocarriers

05/08/2016

Researchers has developed a computer model that will aid in the design of nanocarriers, microscopic structures used to guide drugs to their targets in the body. The model better accounts for how the surfaces of different types of cells undulate due to thermal fluctuations, informing features of the nanocarriers that will help them stick to cells long enough to deliver their payloads.
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Image: a micofluidic chip; Copyright: panthermedia.net/luchschen

New microfluidic chip replicates muscle-nerve connection

04/08/2016

MIT engineers have developed a microfluidic device that replicates the neuromuscular junction - the vital connection where nerve meets muscle. The device, about the size of a U.S. quarter, contains a single muscle strip and a small set of motor neurons. Researchers can influence and observe the interactions between the two, within a realistic, three-dimensional matrix.
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Image: Depiction of patch sensor via CFDRC; Copyright: Sergio Omar Garcia/CFDRC

Sustainable sensors to detect, predict muscle fatigue

02/08/2016

It may be clammy and inconvenient, but human sweat has at least one positive characteristic - it can give insight to what is happening inside your body.
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Image: An image of a brain, with different coulors; Copyright: INS UMR1106 INSERM/AMU

A virtual brain helps decrypt epilepsy

01/08/2016

Researchers at CNRS, INSERM, Aix-Marseille University and AP-HM have just created a virtual brain that can reconstitute the brain of a person affected by epilepsy for the first time. From this work we understand better how the disease works and can also better prepare for surgery. These results are published in Neuroimage.
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Image: Mark Pallen, standing outside beside a building; Copyright: University of Warwick

New cloud-computing platform for analysis of microbial genomes

01/08/2016

The University of Warwick has led the development of a cloud-based microbial bioinformatics resource, which is believed to be the largest of its kind in the world.
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Image: Grapic of human head with many colours; Copyright: panthermedia.net / agsandrew

Americans worried about using gene editing, brain chip implants and synthetic blood

27/07/2016

Many in the general public think scientific and technological innovations bring helpful change to society, but they are more concerned than excited when it comes to the potential use of emerging technologies to make people's minds sharper, their bodies stronger and healthier than ever before, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.
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Image: A graphic that shows the new invention; Copyright: Nano Lab, Tufts University

A thread that collects diagnostic data when sutured into tissue

19/07/2016

For the first time, researchers led by Tufts University engineers have integrated nano-scale sensors, electronics and microfluidics into threads - ranging from simple cotton to sophisticated synthetics - that can be sutured through multiple layers of tissue to gather diagnostic data wirelessly in real time, according to a paper published in Microsystems & Nanoengineering.
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Image: UBC researcher Keekyoung Kim and UBC student Zongjie Wang working in a lab ; Copyright: UBC Okanagan

Cell research could help with heart tissue transplants

18/07/2016

A new technique developed by a UBC researcher could make tissue regeneration cheaper and safer for health-care systems and their patients.
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Image: Fruits, a mobile phone, a scale, a dumbbell, water bottles and a measuring tape on a table; Copyright: panthermedia.net/ stockasso

Weight loss lowers levels of proteins associated with cancer

18/07/2016

Overweight and obese women who lost weight through diet and exercise lowered the levels of certain proteins in their blood that play a role in angiogenesis, the process of blood vessel growth that can promote the growth and survival of cancer cells.
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Image: Black and white microscopic picture of a spongy nanomaterial; Copyright: University of Chicago/Tian Lab

New biomaterial developed for injectable neuronal control

15/07/2016

Ideally, injectable or implantable medical devices should not only be small and electrically functional, they should be soft, like the body tissues with which they interact. Scientists from two UChicago labs set out to see if they could design a material with all three of those properties.
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Photo: Amplified neurons

Vagus nerve stimulation reduces rheumatoid arthritis symptoms

06/07/2016

Clinical trial data published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) demonstrates stimulating the vagus nerve with an implantable bioelectronic device significantly improved measures of disease activity in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
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Photo: Red skeletal myotubes seen through a microscope

Researchers use gelatin to grow stronger muscles

05/07/2016

USC researcher Megan L. McCain and colleagues have devised a way to develop bigger, stronger muscle fibers. But instead of popping up on the bicep of a bodybuilder, these muscles grow on a tiny scaffold or "chip" molded from a type of water-logged gel made from gelatin.
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Photo: Left to right, green fluorescence shows damaged area shrinking over time. Top row, eyes from normal mice. Other rows are eyes from three different mouse models of diabetes

Electric fields weaker in slow-healing diabetic wounds

17/06/2016

People with diabetes often suffer from wounds that are slow to heal and can lead to ulcers, gangrene and amputation. New research from an international group led by Min Zhao, professor of ophthalmology and of dermatology at the University of California, Davis, shows that, in animal models of diabetes, slow healing is associated with weaker electrical currents in wounds.
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Photo: Phil Santangelo and Eric Alonas are shown with a spinning disk confocal microscope used to image cells

Tiny mirror improves microscope resolution for studying cells

17/06/2016

A tiny mirror could make a huge difference for scientists trying to understand what's happening in the micron-scale structures of living cells.
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Photo: A tissue sample coloured in red and green

New way of growing blood vessels for regenerative medicine

02/06/2016

Growing tissues and organs in the lab for transplantation into patients could become easier after scientists discovered an effective way to produce three-dimensional networks of blood vessels, vital for tissue survival yet a current stumbling block in regenerative medicine.
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Photo: Object slides

Tissue storage: "Our top biobanks are internationally leading the charge"

02/02/2015

Only projects with a solid foundation are successful in the long run. This is also true for science. Biobanks are the most important component of this foundation when it comes to fundamental biomedical research: Only high quality tissue samples that are stored there make conclusive research possible - for example in search of the causes of tumorigenesis.
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Photo: People in the waiting room of a doctor's office

Vaccines: activatable depot to replace multiple injections

22/08/2014

Besides antibiotics, vaccines may be the most important development in medicine: they protect us from diseases by “introducing” our immune system to pathogens. This way, a small injection saves us from severe and potentially mortal courses of disease.
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Graphic: Space station

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

22/04/2014

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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