Interviews 2018 -- MEDICA - World Forum for Medicine

Image: Male physician washing his hands; Copyright: Panthermedia/robertprzybysz

Seconds save lives – clean your hands! - World Hand Hygiene Day 2021

05/05/2021

In the spring of 2020, the onset of the Corona pandemic brought the importance of clean hands to the public's attention. Washing hands with soap for 30 seconds was one of the first precautions advised against the virus. But even without Corona, clean hands save lives, especially in healthcare settings.
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Image: A female laboratory employee is operating a large device; Copyright: Matthews Septimus/The Rockerfeller University

'Breakthrough' cases suggest COVID testing may be here to stay

30/04/2021

In rare cases, people who have been fully vaccinated against COVID and are immune to the virus can nevertheless develop the disease. New findings from The Rockefeller University now suggest that these so-called breakthrough cases may be driven by rapid evolution of the virus, and that ongoing testing of immunized individuals will be important to help mitigate future outbreaks.
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Image: A young man with an oxygen tube attached to the nose is sitting next to a large mirror; Copyright: Amayu Wakoya Gena/Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

COVID-19: investigating the risk of infection from ventilated patients

29/04/2021

Together with intensive care physicians at the Kloster Grafschaft-Fachkrankenhaus, scientists at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar are investigating how virus-infected air spreads among ventilated patients. The goal is to prevent the spread of infection in hospitals and care homes.
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Image: Coloured image of a bacterial cell; Copyright: Empa

Fighting harmful bacteria with nanoparticles

28/04/2021

In the arms race "mankind against bacteria", bacteria are currently ahead of us. Our former miracle weapons, antibiotics, are failing more and more frequently when germs use tricky maneuvers to protect themselves from the effects of these drugs.
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Image: Schematic illustrations of solid-phase multiplex RPA; Copyright: Korea Institute of Materials Science (KIMS)

Respiratory viral pathogens caught on-site

16/04/2021

The research team also developed a 3D plasmonic array chip for multiplex molecular detections: a chip that can simultaneously analyze 8 pathogens (4 bacteria and 4 viruses).
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Image: Schematic illustration of the centrifugal multispinning polymer nanofiber production process; Copyright: KAIST (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology)

Centrifugal multispun nanofibers put a new spin on Covid-19 masks

12/04/2021

KAIST researchers have developed a novel nanofiber production technique called ‘centrifugal multispinning’ that will open the door for the safe and cost-effective mass production of high-performance polymer nanofibers.
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Image: A red test kit next to a laptop computer; Copyright: Mo Li/Kaust

Fast, portable test can diagnose COVID-19 and track variants

09/04/2021

Clinicians using a new viral screening test can not only diagnose COVID-19 in a matter of minutes with a portable, pocket-sized machine, but can also simultaneously test for other viruses - like influenza - that might be mistaken for the coronavirus.
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Image: A female nurse wearing a protective cap and a mask; Copyright: PantherMedia/Uladzislau Salikau

Masks associated with reduced COVID-19 risk for healthcare workers

08/04/2021

A study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine from researchers at Henry Ford Health System has found that Henry Ford's early implementation of a universal mask policy in the COVID-19 pandemic was associated with reducing the risk of healthcare workers at Henry Ford acquiring COVID-19.
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Image: A medical worker with gloves takes a blood of drop from a person's finger; Copyright: PantherMedia/vverve

COVID-19 antibody tests, even rapid finger pricks, are effective

08/04/2021

New findings from a Michigan Medicine study reveal that antibody testing is predictive of prior COVID-19 infection, and rapid screening methods - even from finger pricks - are effective testing tools.
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Image: Two sample vials with an attached temperature sensor, the sensor on the right vial has turned blue; Copyright: Adapted from ACS Omega 2021

Temperature sensor could help safeguard mRNA vaccines

06/04/2021

Scientists have developed vaccines for COVID-19 with record speed. The first two vaccines widely distributed in the U.S. are mRNA-based and require ultracold storage (-70 C for one and -20 C for the other).
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Image: A woman and a boy in a shop wearing facemasks; Copyright: PantherMedia/Arne Trautmann

Widespread facemask use vital to suppress pandemic

06/04/2021

A new mathematical model suggests that the easing of lockdown must be accompanied by wider and more effective use of control measures such as facemasks even with vaccination, in order to suppress COVID-19 more quickly and reduce the likelihood of another lockdown.
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Image: A sick woman in lying in bed, blowing her nose and wearing a smartwatch at her wrist; Copyright: PantherMedia/ryanking999

Coronavirus: "A pandemic is a behavioral phenomenon"

31/03/2021

At the virtual.MEDICA 2020 trade fair, Prof. Dirk Brockmann delivered the keynote address in the MEDICA CONNECTED HEALTHCARE FORUM on digital epidemiology, which got a big boost thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. It can help us understand how human behavior influences the course of the pandemic.
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Image: A coughing woman wearing a mask; Copyright: PantherMedia/leungchopan

Three-layered masks most effective against large respiratory droplets

19/03/2021

If you are going to buy a face mask to protect yourself and others from COVID-19, make sure it is a three-layered mask. You might have already heard this recommendation, but researchers have now found an additional reason why three-layered masks are safer than single or double-layered alternatives.
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Image: Simulation models of cough droplets falling to the ground in front of a person; Copyright: V. D'Alessandro, M. Falone, L. Giammichele, R. Ricci

Irradiating COVID-19 cough droplets with UV-C lamps

16/03/2021

Using supercomputer numerical modeling of saliva droplets' diffusion produced by coughs, researchers in Italy explore deactivating COVID-19 virus particles via UV-C light.
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Image: Black-and-white images of two kinds of tissue fibers; Copyright: E.P. Vicenzi/Smithsonian's Museum Conservation Institute and NIST

Humidity in breath makes cotton masks more effective

15/03/2021

Researchers have come up with a better way to test which fabrics work best for masks that are meant to slow the spread of COVID-19. By testing those fabrics under conditions that mimic the humidity of a person's breath, the researchers have obtained measurements that more accurately reflect how the fabrics perform when worn by a living, breathing person.
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Image: Finger of a woman touches sketch of a luminous light bulb; Copyright: PantherMedia/Andreus

Hygiene and disinfection: innovations against Covid-19

01/03/2021

When urgently needed products such as masks become scarce or conventional disinfection processes reach their limits, inventiveness is called for. And there is usually plenty of it in times of crisis. What innovations has the current corona pandemic already produced? How can they supplement or even replace existing products and processes?
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Image: Pharmacist with the transparent mask miama; Copyright: iuvas medical GmbH

Miama: transparent face mask uncovers facial expressions

01/03/2021

Over 50% of our communication is made up of facial expressions and gestures. Nonverbal communication is especially important to deaf or hearing-impaired people or people with dementia. A conventional mask makes this more difficult, may promote miscommunication and contribute to medical errors in extreme cases. Yet it is paramount to use a mask amid this pandemic. Miama helps solve this problem.
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Image: disinfection of a door handle around which coronaviruses are flying; Copyright: PantherMedia/AntonMatyukha

Necessity is the mother of invention – innovations in the corona pandemic

01/03/2021

Keeping your distance, washing your hands, wearing a mask – such protective measures have been the order of the day since the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic began. But appropriate products or procedures are not suitable for everyone, are often unavailable or, despite everything, carry a residual risk. The need for new, better solutions is high. But necessity is the mother of invention.
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Image: Gel electrophoresis; Copyright: Fraunhofer IKTS

New type of ventilator for virus-free air

01/03/2021

With the advent of winter, life has moved back indoors – and, with it, the danger of catching the coronavirus in schools, offices and shopping malls. A ventilator that reduces the danger of infection could play a significant role in combating the coronavirus.
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Image: A long hallway in a hospital with a lot of doors; Copyright: PantherMedia/dlpn

Disinfection: antibacterial coating on surfaces in the ICU

01/03/2021

All hospitalized patients are susceptible to contracting a nosocomial infection, with ICU patients being particularly at risk. The effects of these hospital-acquired infections are often more dangerous than the original reason for the in-patient hospitalization. The "PACMAN" project is now testing an antimicrobial coating for frequently used contact surfaces at high risk of pathogen transmission.
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Image: MRI image of a foot; Copyright: Northwestern University

Radiological images confirm 'COVID-19 can cause the body to attack itself'

26/02/2021

Muscle soreness and achy joints are common symptoms among COVID-19 patients. But for some people, symptoms are more severe, long lasting and even bizarre, including rheumatoid arthritis flares, autoimmune myositis or "COVID toes." A new Northwestern Medicine study has, for the first time, confirmed and illustrated the causes of these symptoms through radiological imaging.
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Image: Self-disinfecting mask and associated battery are held up to the camera; Copyright: ZHAW/Hannes Heinzer

Self-disinfecting mask: germ-free at the push of a button

08/02/2021

Disinfection and masks are essential to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Swiss scientists from ZHAW and Osmotex AG have now combined the two and developed a mask that disinfects itself at the push of a button. It is to be launched on the market as early as this spring.
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Image: A physician is looking at a tablet computer while two nurses care for an intensive care patient in the background; Copyright: PantherMedia/SimpleFoto

BabSim.Hospital: forecasting hospital bed needs

04/02/2021

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, capacity of intensive care units is a hot-button issue as this determines the number of severe COVID-19 cases hospitals can treat. The percentage of currently infected patients can deliver insights into the projected need for ICU beds down the road. The TH Köln developed a tool to help with this planning process.
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Image: A hospital employee is cleaning an endoscope; Copyright: PantherMedia/sielemann

Medical devices: hygienic design combats pathogens

03/02/2021

Medical hygiene does not just play a key role during the COVID-19 pandemic. Preventing the transmission of infectious diseases and especially the spread of multidrug-resistant organisms is paramount even in non-pandemic times. While hygiene practices in hospitals and medical offices are essential, the industry can also make an important contribution with hygienic product design.
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Image: Patient in the intensive care unit; Copyright: PantherMedia/halfpoint

Biostatistics: using data and models to fight Covid-19

27/01/2021

We are all familiar with these images from some countries: Completely full intensive care units, doctors working frantically despite being ill, being forced to decide who lives and who dies due to critical shortages of respirators. How can you forecast Covid-19 impact on healthcare systems to avoid overload? Biostatistician Professor Frank Klawonn studies this issue.
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Image: Prototype of the airlock; Copyright: Fraunhofer IBP

Covid-19: protective canopy prevents infection

19/01/2021

The risk of infection with SARS-CoV-2 is particularly high indoors. This is because, in addition to smear and droplet infection, infection via aerosols that accumulate and spread in the air is also possible there. Sufficient air exchange or air purification help to prevent this. The protective canopy developed by Fraunhofer IBP also follows such an approach.
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Image: Head of a mannequin with transparent face shield and surgical mask; Copyright: Messe Düsseldorf/Achim Wiese

virtual.MEDICA 2020: Experience medicine online

02/11/2020

This year is completely different! Normally, we would offer you an advanced peek into the MEDICA’s halls in Dusseldorf at this point. But due to the corona pandemic, the trade fair takes place online as virtual.MEDICA. We nevertheless took a look at this year’s topics of special interest.
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Image: A white medical face mask is coming out of a production line; Copyright: Fraunhofer IPT

Personal protective equipment: ramping up medical mask production to 50,000 pieces per day

22/07/2020

Necessity is the mother of invention: While many companies have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic, some were able to find the hidden business opportunities the unique situation has created. One example of how companies can benefit from the Covid-19 crisis is the production of medical protective gear.
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Image: Two people wearing protective suits stand next to a workbench in a laboratory; Copyright: Fraunhofer IBMT/Foto Bernd Müller

epiLab: Coronavirus testing in the mobile safety laboratory

08/07/2020

A key to preventing SARS-CoV-2 spread is frequent, comprehensive testing. This allows the early detection of infections and helps break the chain of infection. It always comes down to Coronavirus testing capacity. In Germany's southwest state of Saarland, the mobile epiLab (epidemiological laboratory) supports the search for infections lurking in nursing homes and long-term care facilities.
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Image: man running in a lane on a sports field; Copyright: PantherMedia/stetsik

A Safe Return to Sports amid the COVID-19 Pandemic

22/06/2020

After professional sports and other sporting activities had been drastically limited to prevent COVID-19 spread, training facilities are now reopening to welcome recreational and competitive athletes. However, due to the ongoing pandemic, restrictions are still in place to lower the risk of human infection. EFSMA presents recommendations on a uniform approach to keeping athletes safe.
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Image: A female researcher with face mask, gloves and cap puts an object slide on a microscope; Copyright: PantherMedia/Kzenon

Laboratory work: the right personal protective equipment is crucial

01/04/2020

When working with infectious materials and organisms in the laboratory, safe handling and appropriate training are of utmost importance. Another central component is personal protective equipment designed to prevent contact with tissue, liquids and aerosols and protect the wearer.
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Image: Researcher with gloves and protective suit is working at a microscope; Copyright: PantherMedia/EvgeniyShkolenko

BSL-4 laboratories: highest levels of safety and protection

01/04/2020

Laboratories are sectioned into four biosafety levels to dictate the precautions required to isolate dangerous biological agents. The highest level of biological safety, BSL-4, is perhaps the most well-known when we think of containing pathogens and microbes. However, the fewest number of laboratories actually fall into the BSL-4 category.
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Image: A researcher sits at a laboratory bench and puts gloves at his hands; Copyright: PantherMedia/dragana.stock@gmail.com

The safe laboratory – protection through technology

01/04/2020

When biomedical researchers or diagnosticians work with potentially contagious materials like cell cultures, blood or tissue, they need absolute protection from pathogens. Both safety measures in the workspace and the correct tools and materials are key here. Learn in our Topic of the Month what is important for protection in the lab and what a safe laboratory looks like.
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Image: Microscope next to a screen showing pictures of bacteria cultures; Copyright: PantherMedia/shmeljov

Laboratory safety: infection prevention in the work area

01/04/2020

What goes in, must not come out - and must also not cause harm to anyone working inside the lab. That's perhaps a nice way of summing up "laboratory safety" in one sentence - at least wherever pathogens are handled in biological and medical settings. The necessary laboratory safety precautions primarily depend on what is waiting "inside".
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Image: UV Visual Lift; Copyright: by UVentions

Hygiene: Smart protection against pathogens like the coronavirus

23/03/2020

Germs such as bacteria, viruses or pathogenic fungi can spread from one person to another through direct contact when we shake hands or touch objects. People touch door handles and push elevator buttons in public places and constantly move in and out of spaces. Regular manual high-level disinfection is practically impossible. UVentions GmbH has found an intelligent solution for this problem.
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Image: doctor consoles patients before surgery; Copyright: panthermedia.net/luckybusiness

Endoprosthetic surgery: modern and traditional approaches

01/01/2020

Surgery is required if you need an artificial joint. Patients and doctors must select the type of surgery that’s best suited and choose between robot-assisted, traditional or minimally invasive surgical approaches. Post-operative risks should be kept to a minimum, while benefits should outweigh any possible complications.
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Image: patient with pain in fingers; Copyright: panthermedia.net/Milkos

APRICOT-project: implant "help(s) patients heal themselves"

01/01/2020

Today, people tend to live longer, while an increasing number of patients suffer from osteoarthritis. Even younger generations are now at a higher risk of getting osteoarthritis due to the frequent use of mobile devices. The EU research project APRICOT aims to develop a novel type of implant for the treatment of osteoarthritis of the hands – helping patients heal themselves.
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Image: diagnostic test on a table; Copyright: beta web GmbH/Melanie Prüser

Single-use tests: sensitivity and easy use combined for diagnostics

12/12/2019

Diagnostic testing usually takes some time and a sterile environment to get the results. To cut down on the costs and effort spend on these tasks there are different diagnostic tests. One of them are single-use tests offered by SensDx S.A. The technology behind them not only makes the process faster and easier, but provides the opportunity to expand into home use in the future as well.
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Image: A physician is standing in front of a floating image of the brain and is touching one point; Copyright: panthermedia.net/Igor Vetushko

Medicine 5.0: machine learning algorithms in healthcare

04/11/2019

Artificial intelligence holds the promise of salvation when it comes to medicine: it is meant to unburden medical professionals, save time and money and perform tasks reliably and tirelessly. But before AI algorithms are allowed to diagnose diseases, many technical and ethical questions still need answers.
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Image: Flags are blowing in the wind to the backdrop of a dark evening sky; Copyright: Messe Düsseldorf/ctillmann

Medicine at the pulse of time: Innovations and trends at MEDICA 2019

04/11/2019

Soon, the world's largest trade fair for medical technology will open its doors again: More than 5.000 exhibitors will present their newest products and ideas at MEDICA from 18 to 21 November. You will not only meet well-known companies here, but also lots of young start-ups. Or, you can visit the MEDICA forums and conferences to experience a rich program of lectures and discussions.
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Image: Two petri dishes with different kinds of agar plates on which bacterial cultures are growing; Copyright: panthermedia.net/photographee.eu

Antibiotic resistance: technical tricks against pathogens

01/08/2019

An untreatable infection is a nightmare for physicians and potentially life-threatening to the patient. Unfortunately, more and more pathogens emerge that are resistant to drugs, especially antibiotics. We need to use our drugs smartly and come up with technical solutions as well to prevent our weapons from blunting in the future.
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Image: A greenly lit laboratory device; Copyright: Sven Döring

Photonics: "We want a rapid and easy method to identify pathogens and antibiotic resistance"

01/08/2019

The medical devices value chain has gaps between academic research and industrial practice that slow down innovation processes. This also applies to time-sensitive and urgently needed products such as rapid diagnostic tests to identify resistant pathogens. At the InfectoGnostics Research Campus in Jena, partners from research and medicine team up to close these gaps.
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Image: A man is holding a hand full of pill blisters with antibiotics; Copyright: panthermedia.net/alexkalina

Combating antibiotic resistance: One step ahead through technology

01/08/2019

Antibiotic resistance is on the rise in all parts of the world, complicating medical treatment of serious bacterial infections in patients. The World Health Organization estimates that approximately 33,000 people die each year from antibiotic-resistant bacteria in Europe alone. Bacteria that are resistant to multiple or even all known antibiotics pose an ever-increasing threat.
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Image: A lab technician is using a pipette to fill a solution into a petri dish; Copyright: panthermedia.net/Arne Trautmann

Last-resort antibiotics: "We can identify carbapenemases within half an hour"

01/08/2019

Antibiotic resistance is modern medicine's greatest challenge. Some bacteria only respond to a handful of antibiotics, prompting hospitals to spend a lot of time finding an effective drug. That’s why it is critical for physicians to rapidly identify antibiotic resistance to avoid ineffective treatments.
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Image: Ellipsoid of revolution with a gold coating to detect backscattered photons from the skin tissue; Copyright: Sven Delbeck/Fachhochschule Südwestfalen

Blood Sugar Monitoring: Using Infrared Instead of Invasive Techniques

22/03/2019

Over six million people in Germany have diabetes. It is estimated that almost 400 million people are affected by this disease worldwide. Diabetes sufferers must prick their fingers several times a day to monitor their blood sugar.
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Image: two men in the laboratory next to the Organ Care System with a pig's lung inside; Copyright: Kaiser/MHH

Organ Care System: treatment under extreme conditions

08/05/2018

Multidrug-resistant organisms that are treated with a dosage that exceeds the regular dose a hundred times and at temperatures of over 40 degrees Celsius – the human organism is unable to handle it. Yet if the diseased organ is treated outside of the body, extreme conditions are an option. For the first time, physicians have succeeded in treating a severe case of pneumonia by using the OCS.
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