Interviews 2021 -- MEDICA - World Forum for Medicine

Image: Three men in a laboratory, on checks how a face mask is fitting another - Rupak Banerjee, Israel Ajiboye, Sheyash Manegaonker; Copyright: Ravenna Rutledge/UC Creative

COVID-19: better-fitting face masks greatly improve protection

18/06/2021

Even the best face masks work only as well as their fit. And poorly fitting face masks greatly increase the risk of infection from airborne pathogens compared to custom-fitted masks, according to a new study by the University of Cincinnati.
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Image: An image of a colored tissue section; Copyright: UC San Diego Health Sciences

AI predicts how patients with viral infections will fare

16/06/2021

Gene expression patterns associated with pandemic viral infections provide a map to help define patients' immune responses, measure disease severity, predict outcomes and test therapies - for current and future pandemics.
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Image: a person with electronic stockings in a hospital bed; Copyright: Bispebjerg Hospital

Danish invention preserves muscle mass in COVID-19 patients

03/06/2021

Researchers from Aarhus University have developed electronic support stockings and tested them on bed-ridden Covid patients at Copenhagen University Hospitals. Results show that the stockings counteract a significant loss of muscle mass.
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Image: A swab is lying across a sample vial; Copyright: PantherMedia/fotoquique

Point-of-care tests: rapid diagnosis in emergency situations

01/06/2021

In emergency medicine, a faster diagnosis leads to a faster treatment of the patient. Point-of-care test solutions can provide immediate on-site insights into the patient’s condition. COVID-19 adds another dimension: the devices can provide a level of security and safety – one that goes beyond intensive care.
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Image: x-ray of a chest; Copyright: University of Waterloo

AI is helping doctors manage COVID-19

31/05/2021

Artificial intelligence (AI) technology developed by researchers at the University of Waterloo is capable of assessing the severity of COVID-19 cases with a promising degree of accuracy.
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Image: tiny PCR chip; Copyright: Adapted from ACS Nano 2021, DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.1c02154

Ultrafast, on-chip PCR to speed diagnosis during pandemics

28/05/2021

Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) has been the gold standard for diagnosis during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the PCR portion of the test requires bulky, expensive machines and takes about an hour to complete, making it difficult to quickly diagnose someone at a testing site.
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Image: A sheet of gold leaf cut into a circular shape next to a coin; Copyright: Adapted from ACS Central Science 2021

Gold leaf could help diagnose viral infections in low-resource settings

21/05/2021

Gold leaf - gold metal hammered into thin sheets - is used by artists and crafters to gild picture frames, artwork and clothing. Despite its luxurious appearance, the material is affordable and available at most craft stores.
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Image: A researcher in a lab is holding a microfluidic chip in his hand - Tza-Huei Wang; Copyright: Will Kirk/Johns Hopkins University

Device for fast gonorrhea diagnosis

21/05/2021

A Johns Hopkins University-led team has created an inexpensive portable device and cellphone app to diagnose gonorrhea in less than 15 minutes and determine if a particular strain will respond to frontline antibiotics.
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Image: Two men are standing on a ledge over a big device - Martin Hengesbach and Andreas Schlundt; Copyright: Goethe University Frankfurt

SARS-CoV-2: protocols for laboratories

18/05/2021

For the development of drugs or vaccines against COVID-19, research needs virus proteins of high purity. For most of the SARS-CoV-2 proteins, scientists at Goethe University Frankfurt and a total of 36 partner laboratories have now developed protocols that enable the production of several milligrams of each of these proteins with high purity.
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Image: A info graphic showing the results of a poll about telemedicine use in pediatrics; Copyright: C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health at the University of Michigan

Telemedicine: more kids see doctors virtually, some parents still hesitant

17/05/2021

One in five parents in a new national poll say their child had a virtual health visit over the past year for either check-ups, minor illnesses, mental health or a follow up - a marked increase in remote care for children.
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Image: a x-ray-scan of a chest; Copyright: Courtesy of Nature Publishing

AI tool uses chest X-ray to differentiate worst cases of COVID-19

13/05/2021

Trained to see patterns by analyzing thousands of chest X-rays, a computer program predicted with up to 80 percent accuracy which COVID-19 patients would develop life-threatening complications within four days, a new study finds.
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Image: A female laboratory employee is operating a large device; Copyright: Matthews Septimus/The Rockerfeller University

'Breakthrough' cases suggest COVID testing may be here to stay

30/04/2021

In rare cases, people who have been fully vaccinated against COVID and are immune to the virus can nevertheless develop the disease. New findings from The Rockefeller University now suggest that these so-called breakthrough cases may be driven by rapid evolution of the virus, and that ongoing testing of immunized individuals will be important to help mitigate future outbreaks.
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Image: A young man with an oxygen tube attached to the nose is sitting next to a large mirror; Copyright: Amayu Wakoya Gena/Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

COVID-19: investigating the risk of infection from ventilated patients

29/04/2021

Together with intensive care physicians at the Kloster Grafschaft-Fachkrankenhaus, scientists at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar are investigating how virus-infected air spreads among ventilated patients. The goal is to prevent the spread of infection in hospitals and care homes.
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Image: Blurred picture of an ambulance driving on a road; Copyright: PantherMedia/inhabitant

Emergency EMR created in a week to respond to COVID-19 crisis

27/04/2021

A team from Regenstrief Institute leveraged OpenMRS, a global open-source electronic medical record (EMR), to create an emergency EMR for Indianapolis first responders preparing for a possible influx of COVID-19 patients.
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Image: Schematic illustrations of solid-phase multiplex RPA; Copyright: Korea Institute of Materials Science (KIMS)

Respiratory viral pathogens caught on-site

16/04/2021

The research team also developed a 3D plasmonic array chip for multiplex molecular detections: a chip that can simultaneously analyze 8 pathogens (4 bacteria and 4 viruses).
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Image: Schematic illustration of the centrifugal multispinning polymer nanofiber production process; Copyright: KAIST (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology)

Centrifugal multispun nanofibers put a new spin on Covid-19 masks

12/04/2021

KAIST researchers have developed a novel nanofiber production technique called ‘centrifugal multispinning’ that will open the door for the safe and cost-effective mass production of high-performance polymer nanofibers.
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Image: A red test kit next to a laptop computer; Copyright: Mo Li/Kaust

Fast, portable test can diagnose COVID-19 and track variants

09/04/2021

Clinicians using a new viral screening test can not only diagnose COVID-19 in a matter of minutes with a portable, pocket-sized machine, but can also simultaneously test for other viruses - like influenza - that might be mistaken for the coronavirus.
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Image: A medical worker with gloves takes a blood of drop from a person's finger; Copyright: PantherMedia/vverve

COVID-19 antibody tests, even rapid finger pricks, are effective

08/04/2021

New findings from a Michigan Medicine study reveal that antibody testing is predictive of prior COVID-19 infection, and rapid screening methods - even from finger pricks - are effective testing tools.
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Image: A female nurse wearing a protective cap and a mask; Copyright: PantherMedia/Uladzislau Salikau

Masks associated with reduced COVID-19 risk for healthcare workers

08/04/2021

A study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine from researchers at Henry Ford Health System has found that Henry Ford's early implementation of a universal mask policy in the COVID-19 pandemic was associated with reducing the risk of healthcare workers at Henry Ford acquiring COVID-19.
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Image: A woman and a boy in a shop wearing facemasks; Copyright: PantherMedia/Arne Trautmann

Widespread facemask use vital to suppress pandemic

06/04/2021

A new mathematical model suggests that the easing of lockdown must be accompanied by wider and more effective use of control measures such as facemasks even with vaccination, in order to suppress COVID-19 more quickly and reduce the likelihood of another lockdown.
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Image: Two sample vials with an attached temperature sensor, the sensor on the right vial has turned blue; Copyright: Adapted from ACS Omega 2021

Temperature sensor could help safeguard mRNA vaccines

06/04/2021

Scientists have developed vaccines for COVID-19 with record speed. The first two vaccines widely distributed in the U.S. are mRNA-based and require ultracold storage (-70 C for one and -20 C for the other).
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Image: a human cell; Copyright: Venera Weinhardt

Viewing the Virus close up

01/04/2021

How do viral pathogens succeed in penetrating human cells? Which cellular mechanisms do they use to multiply efficiently and, in doing so, how do they change the structure of their host cell? These questions are the focus of a pan-European research project called "Compact Cell-Imaging Device" (CoCID), in which Heidelberg scientists are playing a major role.
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Image: scan on lungs before and after Covid-19; Copyright: André Rendeiro

New technique provides detailed map of lung pathology in COVID-19

31/03/2021

A team led by investigators at Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian has used advanced technology and analytics to map, at single-cell resolution, the cellular landscape of diseased lung tissue in severe COVID-19 and other infectious lung diseases.
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Image: A sick woman in lying in bed, blowing her nose and wearing a smartwatch at her wrist; Copyright: PantherMedia/ryanking999

Coronavirus: "A pandemic is a behavioral phenomenon"

31/03/2021

At the virtual.MEDICA 2020 trade fair, Prof. Dirk Brockmann delivered the keynote address in the MEDICA CONNECTED HEALTHCARE FORUM on digital epidemiology, which got a big boost thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. It can help us understand how human behavior influences the course of the pandemic.
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Image: four scientists holding up a smartphone and a testing kit; Copyright: NTU Singapore

Covid-19 test detects the virus even when it mutates

30/03/2021

A team of scientists led by Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) has developed a diagnostic test that can detect the virus that causes COVID-19 even after it has gone through mutations.
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Image: biosensor on a shirt; Copyright: Paulo A. Raymundo-Pereira, IFSC-USP

Biosensors help with non-invasive diagnosis of diseases

24/03/2021

Brazilian researchers tested the capacity of different materials to produce sensors for the detection of PCA3, a gene that is overexpressed in prostate cancer. The technique can also be used to diagnose infectious diseases, including COVID-19.
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Image: disinfection of a door handle around which coronaviruses are flying; Copyright: PantherMedia/AntonMatyukha

Necessity is the mother of invention – innovations in the corona pandemic

01/03/2021

Keeping your distance, washing your hands, wearing a mask – such protective measures have been the order of the day since the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic began. But appropriate products or procedures are not suitable for everyone, are often unavailable or, despite everything, carry a residual risk. The need for new, better solutions is high. But necessity is the mother of invention.
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Image: Pharmacist with the transparent mask miama; Copyright: iuvas medical GmbH

Miama: transparent face mask uncovers facial expressions

01/03/2021

Over 50% of our communication is made up of facial expressions and gestures. Nonverbal communication is especially important to deaf or hearing-impaired people or people with dementia. A conventional mask makes this more difficult, may promote miscommunication and contribute to medical errors in extreme cases. Yet it is paramount to use a mask amid this pandemic. Miama helps solve this problem.
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Image: Finger of a woman touches sketch of a luminous light bulb; Copyright: PantherMedia/Andreus

Hygiene and disinfection: innovations against Covid-19

01/03/2021

When urgently needed products such as masks become scarce or conventional disinfection processes reach their limits, inventiveness is called for. And there is usually plenty of it in times of crisis. What innovations has the current corona pandemic already produced? How can they supplement or even replace existing products and processes?
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Image: A physician with a tablet computer in one hand is standing next to a patient’s bed; Copyright: PantherMedia/Wavebreakmedia LtD

Hospital: how an AI tool could improve patient safety

22/02/2021

Sometimes, a hospital stay can proceed successfully without a hitch. At other times, there might be an unexpected turn of events if the patient exhibits complications. Early identification of these patients could prevent unnecessary suffering. A new research project intends to develop an AI-based tool that predicts a patient’s risk of complications at an early stage.
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Image: Self-disinfecting mask and associated battery are held up to the camera; Copyright: ZHAW/Hannes Heinzer

Self-disinfecting mask: germ-free at the push of a button

08/02/2021

Disinfection and masks are essential to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Swiss scientists from ZHAW and Osmotex AG have now combined the two and developed a mask that disinfects itself at the push of a button. It is to be launched on the market as early as this spring.
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Image: A physician is looking at a tablet computer while two nurses care for an intensive care patient in the background; Copyright: PantherMedia/SimpleFoto

BabSim.Hospital: forecasting hospital bed needs

04/02/2021

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, capacity of intensive care units is a hot-button issue as this determines the number of severe COVID-19 cases hospitals can treat. The percentage of currently infected patients can deliver insights into the projected need for ICU beds down the road. The TH Köln developed a tool to help with this planning process.
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Image: Patient in the intensive care unit; Copyright: PantherMedia/halfpoint

Biostatistics: using data and models to fight Covid-19

27/01/2021

We are all familiar with these images from some countries: Completely full intensive care units, doctors working frantically despite being ill, being forced to decide who lives and who dies due to critical shortages of respirators. How can you forecast Covid-19 impact on healthcare systems to avoid overload? Biostatistician Professor Frank Klawonn studies this issue.
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Image: Prototype of the airlock; Copyright: Fraunhofer IBP

Covid-19: protective canopy prevents infection

19/01/2021

The risk of infection with SARS-CoV-2 is particularly high indoors. This is because, in addition to smear and droplet infection, infection via aerosols that accumulate and spread in the air is also possible there. Sufficient air exchange or air purification help to prevent this. The protective canopy developed by Fraunhofer IBP also follows such an approach.
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Image: young man in profile looking at his smartphone laughing; Copyright: PantherMedia/yacobchuk1

mHealth for asthma: Help me manage it myself!

11/01/2021

According to the WHO, around 600 million people worldwide suffer from chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma. Key in the fight against these diseases is therapy adherence, but many sufferers often find this difficult. The result is increased hospitalization, which ultimately comes at the expense of the healthcare system. Smart and mobile technologies could change that.
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Image: Laboratory robot Kevin; Copyright: Fraunhofer IPA

Alone in the lab – robot Kevin relieves the staff

08/12/2020

If Kevin was alone in the lab at night, the next morning, the workers will not find chaos, but labeled tubes and prepared samples. Kevin is a laboratory robot developed by Fraunhofer IPA to relieve the strain on laboratory workers so that they can concentrate on the essentials: research and diagnostics.
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Image: A blue, box-shaped device with a handle and a nozzle; Copyright: 99Technologies S.A.

Disinfection: let mist do the work

02/11/2020

Healthcare settings require sharp weapons to fight both hospital-acquired infections and pathogens like SARS-CoV-2. Besides protective equipment, regular room disinfection is one of them. But they require time and are also prone to error if done manually. Fully automated solutions are needed to relief hospital staff from this exhausting work and perform it reliably. So, why not fog the room?
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Image: Head of a mannequin with transparent face shield and surgical mask; Copyright: Messe Düsseldorf/Achim Wiese

virtual.MEDICA 2020: Experience medicine online

02/11/2020

This year is completely different! Normally, we would offer you an advanced peek into the MEDICA’s halls in Dusseldorf at this point. But due to the corona pandemic, the trade fair takes place online as virtual.MEDICA. We nevertheless took a look at this year’s topics of special interest.
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Image: Monitoring monitor on the Intensive Care Unit; Copyright: PantherMedia/sudok1

In the Intensive Care Unit: smart solutions for better care

03/08/2020

In recent months, its central importance for the healthcare system has become more visible in the public eye due to the corona pandemic: the Intensive Care Unit. Patients who are in a critical condition due to illness, injury or surgery are cared for here by numerous high-tech devices. In addition, more digital solutions are being introduced.
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Image: A white medical face mask is coming out of a production line; Copyright: Fraunhofer IPT

Personal protective equipment: ramping up medical mask production to 50,000 pieces per day

22/07/2020

Necessity is the mother of invention: While many companies have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic, some were able to find the hidden business opportunities the unique situation has created. One example of how companies can benefit from the Covid-19 crisis is the production of medical protective gear.
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Image: Two people wearing protective suits stand next to a workbench in a laboratory; Copyright: Fraunhofer IBMT/Foto Bernd Müller

epiLab: Coronavirus testing in the mobile safety laboratory

08/07/2020

A key to preventing SARS-CoV-2 spread is frequent, comprehensive testing. This allows the early detection of infections and helps break the chain of infection. It always comes down to Coronavirus testing capacity. In Germany's southwest state of Saarland, the mobile epiLab (epidemiological laboratory) supports the search for infections lurking in nursing homes and long-term care facilities.
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Image: man running in a lane on a sports field; Copyright: PantherMedia/stetsik

A Safe Return to Sports amid the COVID-19 Pandemic

22/06/2020

After professional sports and other sporting activities had been drastically limited to prevent COVID-19 spread, training facilities are now reopening to welcome recreational and competitive athletes. However, due to the ongoing pandemic, restrictions are still in place to lower the risk of human infection. EFSMA presents recommendations on a uniform approach to keeping athletes safe.
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Image: Smiling man is standing in nature with one had at his ear; Copyright: panthermedia.net/cristalov

In-ear sensors for monitoring vital parameters

22/04/2020

Wearables offer practical solutions for the flexible measurement of data. The sensor from cosinuss° is worn directly in the ear and offers a precise monitoring of vital parameters.
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Image: UV Visual Lift; Copyright: by UVentions

Hygiene: Smart protection against pathogens like the coronavirus

23/03/2020

Germs such as bacteria, viruses or pathogenic fungi can spread from one person to another through direct contact when we shake hands or touch objects. People touch door handles and push elevator buttons in public places and constantly move in and out of spaces. Regular manual high-level disinfection is practically impossible. UVentions GmbH has found an intelligent solution for this problem.
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