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Miniature Laboratory for Detecting Sparse Biomolecules

Specimens would be concentrated and sorted before detection. The figure schematically depicts a miniature laboratory system that has been proposed for use in the field to detect sparsely distributed biomolecules. By emphasizing concentration and sorting of specimens prior to detection, the underlying system concept would make it possible to attain high detection sensitivities without the need to develop ever more sensitive biosensors.

Posted in: Medical, Briefs, TSP

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Analysis Tool Automates Drug Discovery Data Acquisition and Management

Pharmaceutical company uses calculation software to automate data capture, analysis, and visualization. In the race to deliver drugs to market more quickly, biopharmaceutical companies need to classify and interpret data at unprecedented rates with tools that eliminate redundant analysis tasks and promote collaboration among scientists.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Medical, Briefs

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Microwave Treatment of Prostate Cancer and Hyperplasia

Additional uses are found for a relatively inexpensive microwave treatment system. Microwave ablation in the form of microwave energy applied to a heart muscle by a coaxial catheter inserted in a vein in the groin area can be used to heat and kill diseased heart cells. A microwave catheter has been developed to provide deep myocardial ablation to treat ventricular tachycardia by restoring appropriate electrical activity within the heart and eliminating irregular heartbeats. The resulting microwave catheter design, which is now being developed for commercial use in treating ventricular tachycardia, can be modified to treat prostate cancer and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Inasmuch as the occurrence of BPH is increasing — currently 350,000 operations per year are performed in the United States alone to treat this condition — this microwave catheter has significant commercial potential.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Medical, Briefs

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Satellite-Derived Management Zones

Precision agriculture can be practiced at low cost. The term “satellite-derived management zones” (SAMZ) denotes agricultural management zones that are subdivisions of large fields and that are derived from images of the fields acquired by instruments aboard Earth orbiting satellites during approximately the past 15 years. “SAMZ” also denotes the methodology and the software that implements the methodology for creating such zones. The SAMZ approach is one of several products of continuing efforts to realize a concept of precision agriculture, which involves optimal variations in seeding, in application of chemicals, and in irrigation, plus decisions to farm or not to farm certain portions of fields, all in an effort to maximize profitability in view of spatial and temporal variations in the growth and health of crops, and in the chemical and physical conditions of soils.

Posted in: Medical, Briefs

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Removing Pathogens Using Nano-Ceramic-Fiber Filters

Filters remove greater than 99.9999 percent of viruses and bacteria from wastewater.

Posted in: Medical, Briefs

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Replaceable Microfluidic Cartridges for a PCR Biosensor

Design has been optimized for detection of target DNA sequences The figure depicts a replaceable microfluidic cartridge that is a component of a miniature biosensor that detects target deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) sequences. The biosensor utilizes (1) polymerase chain reactions (PCRs) to multiply the amount of DNA to be detected, (2) fluorogenic polynucleotide probe chemicals for labeling the target DNA sequences, and (3) a high-sensitivity epifluorescence-detection optoelectronic subsystem.

Posted in: Medical, Briefs

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Texturing Blood-Glucose-Monitoring Optics Using Oxygen Beams

Textures can be tailored to exclude blood cells from opticalsensing regions.A method has been invented for utilizing directed, hyperthermal oxygen atoms and ions for texturing tips of polymeric optical fibers or other polymeric optical components for use in optical measurement of concentration of glucose in blood. The required texture of the sensory surface of such a component amounts to a landscape of microscopic hills having high aspect ratios (hills taller than they are wide), with an average distance between hills of no more than about 5 μm. This limit on the average distance between hills is chosen so that blood cells (which are wider) cannot enter the valleys between the hills, where they could obstruct optical sensing of glucose in the blood plasma. On the other hand, the plasma is required to enter the valleys, and a high aspect ratio is intended to maximize the hillside and valley surface area in contact with the plasma, thereby making it possible to obtain a given level of optical glucose-measurement sensitivity with a relatively small volume of blood.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Photonics, Medical, Briefs, TSP

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