Chemical engineers have figured out how to make vaccines faster

A reusable building foundations SuRe Pile

New on-chip optical sensing technique used to detect multiple flu strains

A novel optical fibre sensor: humidity and temperature sensor

According to the market reports, the global photonic sensor market is predicted to have a quantum shift over the next few years. This surge in demand can be attributed to factors such as innovation in the field of fibre optics and expanding the spectral use of sensors in varied industries. The growth of the Fibre Bragg grating (FBG) sensors is one of the most exciting developments in the field of fibre optic sensors in recent years. Compared with conventional fibre-optic sensors, FBG sensors have a number of distinguishing advantages, which makes it a popular choice among many industries. The researchers at the City, University of London (CITY UL) have explored this technology extensively to produce a number of FBG-based sensors, including humidity and temperature sensors, which have been recognized by a number of industrial sectors.

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Metal Made Like Plastic May Have Big Impact

New, innovative methods of creating materials that can be used for motion-based mechanisms have been developed by the researchers at NASA in collaboration with Brigham Young University (BYU) and California Institute of Technology. They have demonstrated that these metals not only have desirable properties for applications where flexibility and durability are required but can also be injection-molded like a plastic and made cheaply. It offers an entirely new industry for high-performance metals. Traditionally, titanium alloys have been used in compliant mechanisms because they were the best materials for the job, but titanium was also difficult to work with.

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Stem cell-based approaches to restore vision

New strategies for treating vision disorders using cells implanted in the retina has been developed by the researchers at the University of Pennsylvania. The work is one of five initiatives newly funded by the National Institutes of Health’s National Eye Institute (NEI) Audacious Goals Initiative. The program’s mission is to accelerate the development of regenerative medicine treatments for blindness. To that end, NEI is devoting $30 million for five years to five multidisciplinary teams around the country. The Penn, CHOP, and UW-led team will receive $6.9 million to support their research into restoring areas of the retina damaged due to blinding diseases.

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Edge develops therapies that address unmet neurological conditions

Gene therapy may help brain heal from stroke and other injuries

Innovative contact lens improves spatial vision

Non-invasive blood monitor for haemoglobin, glucose and blood components

Diabetes (lat. Diabetes Mellitus) is one of the biggest health challenges of the 21st century. Currently, blood glucose can only be monitored through the use of invasive techniques. To date, there is no widely accepted and readily available non-invasive monitoring technique to measure blood glucose despite many attempts. However, researchers at City, University of London (CITY UL), have developed a novel approach that will enable the accurate and calibration-free estimation of glucose concentration in blood. The method is applicable to the non-invasive measurement of any type of blood component such as haemoglobin. This approach is based on spectroscopic techniques and a new adaptive modelling approach.

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New CRISPR method efficiently corrects DMD defect in heart tissue

A CRISPR gene-editing technique that can potentially correct a majority of the 3,000 mutations that cause Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) by making a single cut at strategic points along the patient’s DNA has been developed by the researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center. The method, successfully tested in heart muscle cells from patients, offers an efficient alternative to the daunting task of developing an individualized molecular treatment for each gene mutation that causes DMD. It also opens up possible new treatment approaches for other diseases that have thus far required more intrusive methods to correct single-gene mutations. The new strategy enhances the accuracy for surgical-like editing of the human genome, correcting mistakes in the DNA sequence that cause devastating diseases like DMD, a deadly condition caused by defects in the dystrophin gene.

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An innovative method of cancer diagnosis

Cancer (lat. Carcinoma) is an extremely complicated and variable disease and different types of cancer have different signatures. However, a quick and easy test to detect cancer from blood or biopsy tissue could eventually result in a new approach to patient diagnosis. The test has been developed by University of Queensland researchers Dr Abu Sina, Dr Laura Carrascosa and Professor Matt Trau, who have discovered a unique DNA nanostructure that appears to be common to all cancers. Currently, researchers are working with UniQuest, UQ’s commercialisation company, to further develop the technology and licence with a commercial partner.

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