Through its grants, the five-year, $100 million initiative aims to foster "creative projects that show great promise to improve the health of people in the developing world," and as part of the Grand Challenges in Global Health initiative is supported by the Gates Foundation.
Researchers at the University of Missouri are developing computer graphics visualization software that enables search-and-rescue teams to improve the virtual navigation of spaces unsafe for humans.
Remote-controlled robots have already proved invaluable in search-and-rescue missions, reaching places that humans often can't--or shouldn't. (Think earthquakes, bomb threats, or the recent mine explosion in West Virginia.) But software developed in Columbia, Mo., aims to improve what we do with the data these bots collect.
"We are developing computer graphics visualization software to allow the user to interactively navigate the 3D data captured from the robot's scans," says … Read more
Currently, radiologists measure the sizes of potentially cancerous lung nodules by measuring their largest widths using a two-dimensional computer screen. (The method widely used to do this is called RECIST.) Now, researchers are investigating volumetrics, by which they can measure nodules in 3D.
Thanks to work done by a team of researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), in the simplest of cancer cases, volumetrics appears to reveal volume changes far more precisely than currently possible on 2D screens, which could cut diagnosis time from six months down to four weeks, the researchers estimate.
"We found … Read more
Just a few months after receiving $42 million from the Australian government, Bionic Vision Australia (BVA) unveils its prototype bionic eye, which researchers hope will enable users to perceive points of light that the brain can reconstruct into images.
Announced this week at the University of Melbourne, the wide-view neurostimulator concept was developed by researchers at BVA and the University of New South Wales for patients with vision loss due to retinitis pigmentosa or macular degeneration.
The set-up includes a video camera mounted to glasses to capture images, a wireless processor to convert and send those images to the implant, … Read more
A brain scanning technique known as resting-state functional connectivity (FC) could help clinicians identify and even predict the effects of brain injuries such as strokes, according to neurologists at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.
Originally developed to study how brain networks let various parts of the brain collaborate, FC also appears to enable scientists to link differences in harm done to brain networks to changes in patient impairment, according to results of a study in the Annals of Neurology March issue.
"Clinicians who treat brain injury need new markers of brain function that can predict … Read more
A computer algorithm, functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI), and neuroscientists working together have been able to identify what people are remembering by measuring blood flow levels, according to new research out of the University College London.
First, a group of 10 volunteers (average age 21) was shown three very short (as in 7 seconds) films, each of a woman on a city street doing a simple task, such as mailing a letter. Then, each of the volunteers was placed inside an fMRI scanner and asked to recall each film, first in a specific order, then at random.
Using the scanner … Read more
To determine if there is cancer in one's lymph nodes, a typically advanced stage requiring more aggressive treatment, pathologists are stuck performing several specific, detailed tests that may or may not target the cancerous cells. Using the needle-in-a-haystack analogy would be apt.
But thanks to the work of researchers at the University of Missouri in Columbia, a technique using photoacoustics could scan a lymph node biopsy with laser pulses, whereby the pigment of melanin reacts to the laser's beam, absorbing the light, and heating and cooling (read: expanding and contracting) rapidly. This produces a popping sound that's … Read more
It was horrible to imagine. A Belgian man, uncommunicative since a car accident left him paralyzed in 1983, suddenly seemed to have a message to convey last November with the help of a speech therapist. He was not unconscious, he indicated. He was trapped.
Now, neurologist Steven Laureys, one of Rom Houben's doctors who diagnosed the patient as conscious based on bedside tests performed four years ago, is telling reporters the speech therapist got it wrong. While recent brain scans of Houben do show brain activity and even consciousness, Houben is not communicating, Laureys says.
"We did not … Read more
GE Healthcare on Monday announced the commercial release of a new, smartphone-size imaging tool that lets physicians carry ultrasound technology in their pockets.
The group says its Vscan imaging device is now commercially available after receiving clearance by the FDA in the U.S. and getting the CE Mark from the European Union and the Medical Device License from Health Canada.
Specifically, Vscan is cleared as a prescription device for ultrasound imaging, measurement, and analysis in the clinical applications of abdominal, cardiac (adult and pediatric), urological, fetal/OB, pediatric, and thoracic/pleural motion and fluid detection.
It all started in 2006, when researchers were studying a young woman considered to be in a vegetative state. Using MRI to scan her brain, they asked her to imagine herself playing tennis and touring her own home, and found that her brain behaved in much the way a normally functioning brain does.
The neuroscientists were shocked into action as news of what may have only been an anomaly prompted families to ask that the researchers study their own loved ones, too.