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Image: ink is applied to a carrier plate with a 3D-Printer; Copyright: Empa

3D-Printing: Wood on our Skin

09.10.2019

Physiological parameters in our blood can be determined without painful punctures. Empa researchers are currently working with a Canadian team to develop flexible, biocompatible nanocellulose sensors that can be attached to the skin. The 3D-printed analytic chips made of renewable raw materials will even be biodegradable in future.
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Image: detail of the microneedle biosensor; Copyright: Imperial College London

Biosensor: detecting patient's antibiotic levels with microneedles

02.10.2019

Small, non-invasive patches worn on the skin can accurately detect the levels of medication in a patient's system, matching the accuracy of current clinical methods. In a small-scale clinical evaluation, researchers at Imperial College London have shown for the first time how microneedle biosensors can be used to monitor the changing concentration of antibiotics.
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Image: silver nanopillars on a blue background; Copyright: Northwestern University

Nanotechnology: tiny biocompatible laser

25.09.2019

Nanolaser has potential to treat neurological disorders or sense disease biomarkers. Researchers have developed a tiny nanolaser that can function inside of living tissues without harming them. Just 50 to 150 nanometers thick, the laser is about 1/1,000th the thickness of a single human hair.
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Image: tissue in a glass container; Copyright: Fraunhofer FEP

Implants: innovative multi-component procedure

25.09.2019

The Fraunhofer FEP has developed a process, called SULEEI, which makes it possible to sterilize and preserve decellularized pericardial tissue by means of photo-initiated ultraviolet crosslinking with low-energy electron irradiation.
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Image: nanomaterial structural image; Copyright: Santos Lab

Nanotechnology: nanomedicine for efficient chemotherapy

23.09.2019

Researchers at the University of Helsinki in collaboration with researchers from Åbo Akademi University,Finland and Huazhong University of Science and Technology,China have developed a new anti-cancer nanomedicine for targeted cancer chemotherapy. This new nano-tool provides a new approach to use cell-based nanomedicines for effcient cancer chemotherapy.
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Image: vascular prosthesis for the aorta; Copyright: JOTEC GmbH

Prosthesis: new lease of life thanks to new aorta

20.09.2019

Patients with the rare Loeys-Dietz syndrome suffer from aortic enlargement which may result in sudden over-expansion and a fatal aortic tear. In order to prevent this from happening, an aortic prosthesis must be implanted.
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Image: bacterial syringe structure on a black background; Copyright: Shikuma Lab

Bacteriology: structures can be tapped to deliver drugs

19.09.2019

Not all bacteria spread diseases, many are beneficial and this strain has nanoscale syringes that deliver proteins which cause metamorphosis in marine animals, and could be modified as a novel drug delivery tool for future vaccines and cancer care.
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Image: new patch pictured below a traditional needle-based flu shot; Copyright: University of Rochester Medical Center

Commodities: needle-free flu vaccine patch

18.09.2019

A new needle-free flu vaccine patch revved up the immune system much like a traditional flu shot without any negative side effects, according to a study. Though the research is in the early stages, it's an important step toward a technology that could replace needle-based vaccination methods that require administration by health care workers and biohazard waste removal.
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Image: tissue grown on a capillary bridge; Copyright: MPI of Colloids and Interfaces/ Sebastian Ehrig

Tissue engineering: Form is function

12.09.2019

Liquid-like tissue behavior is a key principle for the formation of structures in biological systems. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces in Potsdam have shown that growing bone tissue behaves like a viscous liquid on long time scales, thereby accepting forms with minimal surface area.
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Image: dna strings in yellow, blue and red; Copyright: panthermedia.net/khenghotoh

DNA: construction kit replaces expensive antibody medication

11.09.2019

Researchers at KU Leuven in Belgium have developed a technique to make sheep produce new antibodies simply by injecting the DNA building blocks. This approach is much cheaper and more efficient than producing antibodies industrially and administering them afterwards. The study in animals with a similar size as humans brings us a step closer to the clinical use of antibody gene therapy.
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Image: a stent coated with titanium oxynitride; Copyright: Fraunhofer IKTS

Stents: better protection against occluded blood vessels

06.09.2019

Cardiovascular stents are special implants used to widen blood vessels that have become constricted as a result of calcium deposits. In some cases, the body's immune system can reject these implants in a process known as foreign-body reaction. In a joint project with partners, Fraunhofer researchers have now developed enhanced coatings that substantially improve the biocompatibility of stents.
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Image: new microneedle patch; Copyright: Celestine Hong and Yanpu He

Skin substitute: medication delivery in one minute

29.08.2019

Nearly 100,000 new cases of melanoma are diagnosed every year, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Now, researchers have developed a fast-acting skin patch that efficiently delivers medication to attack melanoma cells. The device, tested in mice and human skin samples, is an advance toward developing a vaccine to treat melanoma and has widespread applications for other vaccines.
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Image: patient uses the new developed hydrogel; Copyright: panthermedia.net/Genrix20061.mail.ru

Hydrogels: show promise in treating bone defects

28.08.2019

Bioengineers and dentists from the UCLA School of Dentistry have developed a new hydrogel that is more porous and effective in promoting tissue repair and regeneration compared to hydrogels that are currently available. Once injected in a mouse model, the new hydrogel is shown to induce migration of naturally occurring stem cells to better promote bone healing.
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Image: Detail of the world' s smallest stent; Copyright: de Marco C. et al, Adv. Mater. Technol., 2019

Vascular prostheses: the world's smallest stent

12.08.2019

Approximately one in every thousand children develops a urethral stricture, sometimes even when they are still a foetus in the womb.
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Image: Man with a green glove is holding a circuit implant in front of the camera; Copyright: EPFL 2019/ Murielle Gerber

Circuit implant: releasing painkillers inside the body

09.08.2019

Researchers in EPFL's Microsystems Laboratory are now working on a biodegradable implant that would release a local anesthetic on-demand over several days. Not only would this implant reduce patients' post-op discomfort, but there would be no need for further surgery to remove it.
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Image: the model of a kidney with gripping tools and the adhesive; Copyright: Purenum GmbH

A clean kidney: Break then glue

08.11.2018

Not enough exercise, an unhealthy diet: Kidney stones develop when urine contains too many insoluble compounds and are now one of the most common diseases worldwide. The ailment annually affects 1.2 million people in Germany alone. The stones are broken up and taken out via endoscopic surgery. Now it’s possible to remove even the tiniest residual fragments. The solution: a biocompatible adhesive.
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