Medical

Wideband Single-Crystal Transducer for Bone Characterization

These transducers have uses in medical ultrasound imaging and room-temperature ultrasonic flow meters. The microgravity conditions of space travel result in unique physiological demands on the human body. In particular, the absence of the continual mechanical stresses on the skeletal system that are present on Earth cause the bones to decalcify. Trabecular structure decreases in thickness and increases in spacing, resulting in decreased bone strength and increased risk of injury. Thus, monitoring bone health is a high priority for long-term space travel. A single probe covering all frequency bands of interest would be ideal for such measurements, and this would also minimize storage space and eliminate the complexity of integrating multiple probes.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Medical, Briefs

Read More >>

Extreme Ionizing-Radiation-Resistant Bacterium

Deinococcus phoenicis sp. nov. can be used as an indicator for sterilization processes in food, aerospace, medical, and pharmaceutical applications. There is a growing concern that desiccation and extreme radiation-resistant, non-spore-forming microorganisms associated with spacecraft surfaces can withstand space environmental conditions and subsequent proliferation on another solar body. Such forward contamination would jeopardize future life detection or sample return technologies. The prime focus of NASA’s planetary protection efforts is the development of strategies for inactivating resistance-bearing microorganisms. Eradication techniques can be designed to target resistance-conferring microbial populations by first identifying and understanding their physiologic and biochemical capabilities that confers its elevated tolerance (as is being studied in Deinococcus phoenicis, as a result of this description). Furthermore, hospitals, food, and government agencies frequently use biological indicators to ensure the efficacy of a wide range of radiationbased sterilization processes. Due to their resistance to a variety of perturbations, the non-spore forming D. phoenicis may be a more appropriate biological indicator than those currently in use.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Medical, Briefs

Read More >>

Fluorescence-Activated Cell Sorting of Live Versus Dead Bacterial Cells and Spores

Commercial applications include hospital operating room cleanliness validation assays, pharmaceutical development, and semiconductor development. This innovation is a coupled fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) and fluorescent staining technology for purifying (removing cells from sampling matrices), separating (based on size, density, morphology, and live versus dead), and concentrating cells (spores, prokaryotic, eukaryotic) from an environmental sample.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Medical, Briefs

Read More >>

Nonhazardous Urine Pretreatment Method

This method can be used as a means for safe urine storage on ships, planes, and recreational vehicles, or in conjunction with portable restrooms. A method combines solid phase acidification with two non-toxic biocides to prevent ammonia volatilization and microbial proliferation. The safe, nonoxidizing biocide combination consists of a quaternary amine and a food preservative. This combination has exhibited excellent stabilization of both acidified and unacidified urine.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Medical, Briefs

Read More >>

Method and Apparatus for Automated Isolation of Nucleic Acids from Small Cell Samples

Advantages include reduced or eliminated use of toxic reagents and operator-independent extraction. RNA isolation is a ubiquitous need, driven by current emphasis on microarrays and miniaturization. With commercial systems requiring 100,000 to 1,000,000 cells for successful isolation, there is a growing need for a small-footprint, easy-to-use device that can harvest nucleic acids from much smaller cell samples (1,000 to 10,000 cells). The process of extraction of RNA from cell cultures is a complex, multi-step one, and requires timed, asynchronous operations with multiple reagents/buffers. An added complexity is the fragility of RNA (subject to degradation) and its reactivity to surface.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Drug Delivery & Dispensing, Automation & Controls, Biosensors, Medical, Briefs, MDB

Read More >>

Flexible Sensors Offer View into Epileptic Seizures

Brain activity can be monitored and sampled using minimal amount of wires and electrodes and improving implantable devices. Tapping into the human brain to understand its functions in daily life — as well as its malfunctions in illness — has long been a challenge for researchers. Mapping brain activity requires unwieldy, invasive arrays of electrodes and sensors that can damage tissue while only reading activity in a limited area. A team of researchers at the Polytechnic Institute of New York University (NYUPoly) partnering with researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, have devised a streamlined, minimally invasive brain interface that may yield new insights into the causes of brain diseases like epilepsy and could potentially lead to new implantable neuroprosthetic and diagnostic devices.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Imaging & Diagnostics, Monitoring & Testing, Electronics, Implants & Prosthetics, Biosensors, Treatment Devices, Medical, Briefs, MDB

Read More >>

Biosensor May Improve Disease Detection

A new biosensor could rapidly and accurately detect early stage disease in very low concentrations. A quick, inexpensive and highly sensitive test that identifies disease markers or other molecules in low-concentration solutions could be the result of a Cornell-developed nanomechanical biosensor, which could potentially help with early stage disease detection.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Imaging & Diagnostics, Electronics, Materials / Adhesives / Coatings, Biosensors, Medical, Briefs, MDB

Read More >>