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Image: Luis Bujanda sits in his office wearing a Face mask; Copyright: University oft he Basque Country

Blood test obviates unnecessary surgery in colon cancer patients

07/09/2021

A study by the UPV/EHU-University of the Basque Country develops a simple, non-invasive tool designed to predict the existence of residual tumour cells.
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Image: Human skin cells cultures (gray and cyan) are reprogrammed by the uptake of synthetic exosomes (purple); Copyright: Max Planck Institute for Medical Research

Programming synthetic exosomes to optimize wound healing

06/09/2021

Scientists from the MPI for Medical Research and colleagues have engineered synthetic exosomes that regulate cellular signaling during wound closure. The synthetic structures resemble naturally occurring extracellular vesicles (EV) that play a fundamental role in communication between cells.
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Image: Eight simulations of melanoma cell image traces converted with AI software to show, from left to right, a state of highly metastatic potential to low metastatic pote; Copyright: Andrew Jamieson

AI algorithm developed to assess metastatic potential in skin cancers

13/08/2021

Using artificial intelligence (AI), researchers from UT Southwestern have developed a way to accurately predict which skin cancers are highly metastatic. The findings published as the July cover article of Cell Systems, show the potential for AI-based tools to revolutionize pathology for cancer and a variety of other diseases.
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Image: Tumour boundary in blue, tumor tissue above on the left, Collagen in green, cell nuclei in red; Copyright: ETH Zurich

Illuminating tissue formation

10/08/2021

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body. It makes up a third of protein content and single strands assemble to form stable fibres that give structure to connective tissue such as skin, tendons, cartilage and bones. Researchers at ETH Zurich have now developed a multi-component molecule that interacts with collagen and can be used to illuminate new tissue growth in the body.
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Image: Sample vial; Copyright: Takuya Isono

Enabling safe delivery of RNA drugs to the lungs

05/08/2021

Hokkaido University researchers in Japan created and tested a library of lipid-based compounds to find a way to safely and effectively deliver RNA drugs to the lungs.
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Image: A white plastic chip with green, yellow and blue microfluidic chambers; Copyright: ETH Zurich / Julia Boos

Toxicity testing on the placenta and embryo

27/07/2021

Drugs must be safe not just for the patients; in the case of pregnant patients, drugs must also be safe for the unborn children still in the womb. Therefore, at an early stage in the development of new medicines, candidate substances are tested in the Petri dish on embryonic stem cells from mouse cell lines.
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Image: Two women and a man in front of a building - Sonja Langthaler, Christian Baumgartner, Theresa Rienmüller; Copyright: Helmut Lunghammer/TU Graz

World's first digital model of a cancer cell

16/07/2021

The computer model, developed under the lead management of researchers at TU Graz, simulates the cyclical changes in the membrane potential of a cancer cell using the example of human lung adenocarcinoma and opens up completely new avenues in cancer research.
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Image: A man and a woman in a laboratory - Julia Schipke, Christian Mühlfeld; Copyright: Karin Kaiser/MHH

MHH fills important gap in lung research

13/07/2021

For the first time, a team of scientists clearly demonstrates the existence of lipofibroblasts in human electron microscope.
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Image: Two female laboratory employees; Copyright: WFIRM

Regenerative medicine: RegeneratOR Test Bed to launch start-ups

01/07/2021

The RegeneratOR Test Bed has officially launched, bringing together resources to advance the regenerative medicine field nationally and create an economic development engine for the region and the state overall.
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Image: A golden, tree-like structure with a golden circle around it on black ground; Copyright: Bancelin et al.

Novel calibration procedure for super-resolution brain imaging

25/06/2021

A simple and robust procedure corrects a systematic error in microscopy, enabling precise imaging of biological tissue at greater depth.
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Image: A thin tissue slice on a glass slide in front of a technical device; Copyright: Corinna Friedrich, MDC/Charité

Probing deeper into tumor tissues

23/06/2021

Researchers at the MDC, the BIH and Charité have developed methods for performing comprehensive analyses of fixed tumor tissue samples. These analyses make it possible to shed new light on the clinical course of various cancer types, as the team reports in Nature Communications.
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Image: 3D printer with a human heart inside, next to a box with

Bioprinting: life from the printer

01/12/2020

It aims at the production of test systems for drug research and gives patients on the waiting lists for donor organs hope: bioprinting. Thereby biologically functional tissues are printed. But how does that actually work? What are the different bioprinting methods? And can entire organs be printed with it? These and other questions are examined in our Topic of the Month.
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Image: Illustrations of various 3D-printed prostheses, implants and organs; Copyright: PantherMedia/annyart

Printed life – possibilities and limits of bioprinting

01/12/2020

Implants, prostheses and various other components made of plastic, metal or ceramics are already being produced by additive manufacturing. But skin, blood vessels or entire organs from the printer – is that possible? For years now, intensive research has been underway into the production of biologically functional tissue using printing processes. Some things are already possible with bioprinting.
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Image: cell matrix; Copyright: TU Wien

Multi-photon lithography: printing cells with micrometer accuracy

01/12/2020

How do cells react to certain drugs? And how exactly is new tissue created? This can be analyzed by using bioprinting to embed cells in fine frameworks. However, current methods are often imprecise or too slow to process cells before they are damaged. At the TU Vienna, a high-resolution bioprinting process has now been developed using a new bio-ink.
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Image: three vials, one with hydrogels, one with bio ink and one with unmodified gelatine; Copyright: Fraunhofer IGB

"Cells are highly sensitive" – material development for bioprinting

01/12/2020

The big hope of bioprinting is to someday be able to print whole human organs. So far, the process has been limited to testing platforms such as organs-on-a-chip. That's because the actual printing process already poses challenges. Scientists need suitable printing materials that ensure the cell's survival as it undergoes the procedure. The Fraunhofer IGB is researching and analyzing this aspect.
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Image: Computer-generated image of an arborizing blood vessel; Copyright: panthermedia.net/Ugreen

Angiogenesis: light shows blood vessels the way

03/02/2020

Regenerative medicine aims to replace damage in the body with functional tissue and restore normal function. The first defense for large defects are implants made of hydrogels, designed to promote cell growth. They need their own blood supply, which is a problem when it comes to larger implants because you cannot regulate where and how the blood vessels grow - until now.
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Image: The shoulder of a man with a surgical suture; Copyright: panthermedia.net/JPCPROD

Regenerative medicine: helps the body healing

03/02/2020

Severe wounds heal slowly and leave scars. This is why we have been using regenerative therapies for some time now to accelerate and improve healing. They also help to avoid permanent damage. Still, complex applications like replacing organs or limbs will rather remain vision than become reality for a long time.
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Image: Volker Bruns; Copyright: Fraunhofer ISS

AI software: "iSTIX opens your world to the possibilities of digital pathology"

08/10/2019

The healthcare market offers a multitude of microscopes that make cells visible to the human eye. The same applies to AI-based software for image analysis. After taking the microscopic images, scientist are faced with large volumes of scans with usually low resolution. Yet when all aspects merge together, they open up a the world of digital pathology.
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Image: Cell cultivation in a Petri dish; Copyright: panthermedia.net / matej kastelic

Organ-on-a-chip – Organs in miniature format

01/02/2019

In vitro processes and animal tests are used to develop new medications and novel therapeutic approaches. However, animal testing raises important ethical concerns. Organ-on-a-chip models promise to be a feasible alternative. In a system the size of a smartphone, organs are connected using artificial circulation.
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Image: Man and woman in a laboratory presenting a multi-organ chip; Copyright: TissUse GmbH

Multi-Organ Chips – The Patients of Tomorrow?

01/02/2019

The liver, nervous tissue or the intestines: all are important human organs that have in the past been tested for their function and compatibility using animal or in vitro test methods. In recent years, TissUse GmbH, a spin-off of the Technical University of Berlin (TU Berlin), has launched multi-organ chip platforms. But that’s not all.
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Image: Graphic rendering of several cells in a petri dish; Copyright: panthermedia.net/dani3315

Organ-on-a-chip systems: limited validity?

01/02/2019

Organ-on-a-chip systems are technically a great enhancement of medical research because they facilitate testing of active ingredients on cell cultures in the chambers of a plastic chip. This replaces animal testing and improves patient safety. That being said, they are not a true-to-life replication of the human body and can only simulate a few functions and activities.
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Photo: Preview picture of video

From algorithm to rapid test – Artificial Intelligence classifies blood cells

21/11/2018

Our blood reveals a lot about our physical health. The shape of our blood cells sheds light on several hereditary diseases for example. For a diagnosis, the cells must first be examined under the microscope and categorized into a specific cell class. We met with Dr. Stephan Quint and Alexander Kihm of the Institute of Physics at the Saarland University, who explained how this classification works.
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Image: Small brown mole on the back of a hand; Copyright: panthermedia.net/Mario Hahn

Early detection: Tattoo signals cancer – and more

09/07/2018

People who are not ill and do not show any symptoms typically do not visit the doctor. And while most people know that preventive medical checkups for cancer, for example, are important, they still avoid them. They tend to be very hesitant because the doctor might detect a serious illness. In the future, a new type of implant could make it easier to go to a screening test.
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Image: AcCellerator research device at an exhibition stand; Copyright: Daniel Klaue, ZELLMECHANIK DRESDEN GmbH

Cells in the speed trap – diagnosis in a matter of seconds

22/06/2018

A drop of blood provides a lot of valuable information. However, it takes several hours to analyze the blood of a patient and make a diagnosis. This takes away a lot of time that's crucial for treatment. A new method intends to considerably speed up this process by testing the cells in the blood in terms of their deformability and immune response.
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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: yellow tape measure with capsules in front of it; Copyright: panthermedia.net/Jiri Hera

Personalized cancer medicine: customized treatment

01/03/2018

Everyone is different. This statement also applies to our health. Cancer, in particular, can look and progress differently depending on the individual person. That’s why every patient ideally also needs a customized treatment that is tailored to their individual needs. But how feasible is this idea?
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Image: a container with the nutrient medium for cancer cells; Copyright: Dr. Markus Wehland

Cells in space – extraterrestrial approaches in cancer research

22/02/2018

Here on Earth, all experiments are bound by gravitation. Yet, freed from gravity's grip, tumor cells, for example, behave in an entirely different way. As part of the "Thyroid Cancer Cells in Space" project by the University of Magdeburg, smartphone-sized containers carrying poorly differentiated thyroid cancer cells are sent into space.
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"Spray-On" muscle fibers for biomimetic surfaces

08/01/2018

Few patients with heart failure are fortunate enough to receive a donor's heart. Ventricular assist devices (or heart pumps) have been around for several years and are designed to buy time as patients wait for a transplant. Unfortunately, the body doesn't always tolerate these devices.
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