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Image: 3D printed, two-millimeter implant under the microscope; Copyright: Jacob Koffler and Wei Zhu, UC San Diego

3D printed implant promotes nerve cell growth

16/01/2019

For the first time, researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine and Institute of Engineering in Medicine have used rapid 3D printing technologies to create a spinal cord, then successfully implanted that scaffolding, loaded with neural stem cells, into sites of severe spinal cord injury in rats.
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Image: robot hand and human hand are going to shake hands in front of a laptop; Copyright: MedUni Vienna

Bionic reconstruction after amputation of a hand

15/01/2019

Modern prostheses offer patients who have had a hand amputated much greater capability in everyday life than was possible with previous prosthetic reconstructive techniques. Redundant nerves from the amputated extremity can be surgically transferred to provide a much better connection between the patient’s body and the prosthesis.
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Image: View over the shoulders of two doctors at a screen showing a model of a heart; Copyright: panthermedia.net/Wavebreakmedia ltd

Regenerative heart valves: from simulation to replacement

23/07/2018

Every year, more than 250,000 patients worldwide receive heart valve implants. Children require repeated replacement surgery because their bodies are still growing, the prosthetic heart valves are not. Regenerative heart valves solve this problem. Until now, we have only been able to monitor how these living implants develop in the body after the fact. Computer models now make this predictable.
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Image: Two hands are holding a tubular frame that is carrying a glistening wet, white tube; Copyright: Leibniz University of Hanover/Institute of Technical Chemistry

Tissue engineering: how to grow a bypass

23/04/2018

A bypass is a complicated structure. It is either made of synthetic materials that can cause blood clots and infections or created by using the patient’s veins. However, the latter often does not yield adequate material. A newly developed bioreactor could solve this problem in the future. It is designed to tissue engineer vascular grafts by using the body’s own material.
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Image: Eileen Stark prepares Dominik Wetzel for a measurement; Copyright: WHZ/Helge Gerischer

Paraplegia: moving muscles using electrical impulses

22/11/2016

It happens about 1,800 times per year: after a sporting or traffic-related accident, a person’s spinal cord is injured to where nerve tracts are severed and he/she becomes paralyzed. Researchers now want to develop software that measures the brain signals of paralyzed patients and sends out electrical impulses via a system to stimulate muscles, causing them to move again.
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Photo: Stent in human body

Safe or Not Safe? "The AB-DES has not gained market access in countries like Japan or the U.S."

01/05/2016

Antibody-coated, drug-eluting stents (AB-DES) feature an exterior coated with immunosuppressant drugs and an interior that is coated with antibodies to accelerate the adhesion of endothelial cells. In theory, this makes it possible to shorten the duration of therapy with blood thinners, which can mean relief for patients from an already difficult situation.
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Photo: two physicians working at a test set-up

Atherosclerosis: Getting to the root of the problem with a turbo gene

09/02/2016

Many people suffer from atherosclerosis, especially in developed countries. The buildup of fatty deposits inside the arterial blood vessels leads to strokes and heart attacks. Now, a new method is designed to get to the root of the problem, and with the help of nanoparticles inject new turbo replacement cells into the blood vessels which are intended to exert their curative effect.
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Photo: Printer head over a glass sheet

Melt electrospinning writing: polymer fibers for tissue engineering

01/02/2016

Sometimes, soft tissue in our body needs to be replaced after surgery or an injury. But surgeons are not always able to take tissue from other body parts as a replacement. Then, they need to use implants. The production of soft implants that can constantly endure load and stress like our own tissue is a big challenge for research. Melt electrospinning writing can be a solution.
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Photo: child with broken arm

Different specialties, one goal – treating children right

01/02/2016

Children, especially newborns, are generally no longer simply considered to be small adults whose treatment just needs to be "reduced". This is why a pediatrician’s education includes several specialties because ultimately everything in terms of care comes together here.
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Photo: pipette in petri dish

Great leaps forward thanks to new methods

01/02/2016

Self-healing powers like a superhero on the big screen? That’s the aim of regenerative medicine; at least in a very broad sense. This promising field of biomedicine is currently highly dynamic with innovative technologies and development. New methods are designed to help propel medicine into a whole new sphere.
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Cultured skin makes large-scale transplantations possible

01/07/2014

Large burns require skin grafting. Surgeons remove split-thickness skin grafts and apply them to the injured areas. Now skin that has been made in a laboratory is meant to help in covering burns as well as chronic wounds and thus promote the healing process. Researchers in Zurich have been working on this for more than 13 years.
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