Under the Microscope
Nov. 1, 2012

Pediatricians OK embryonic stem cell research
MedPage Today
Citing its potential for use in pediatric diseases, the American Academy of Pediatrics has thrown its support behind human embryonic stem cell research. The research has possible implications for certain childhood diseases, including hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, bone marrow failure syndromes, leukemia, congenital heart disease, neonatal lung disease and type 1 diabetes, according to members of the academy's committees on pediatric research and bioethics.More

Transdermal patch continuously monitors blood chemistry — without needles and clinical pathology laboratory testing
Dark Daily
There's a new technology that makes it possible to continuously monitor an individual's blood chemistry and wirelessly transmit the data. This technology uses a transdermal patch and is a different approach to clinical diagnostics with the potential to supplant some traditional medical laboratory testing. More

Novartis to invest $500 million in new Singapore site
Reuters via Chicago Tribune
Swiss drugmaker Novartis said it would spend more than $500 million on a new biotechnology production site in Singapore to support its growing pipeline of biologics. The Basel-based company said construction of the new site would begin in early 2013 and the facility is expected to be fully operational by the end of 2016. Novartis said the site will focus on drug substance manufacturing based on cell culture technology.More

Hope for cancer patients nearer than ever — at Medical College of Wisconsin
Wauwatosa Patch
Scientists in Southeast Wisconsin's major medical research center are teasing out the fundamental functions of cancer cells and learning how to defeat them.More

Doctors can regrow breast tissue after surgery
The Age
Melbourne, Australia, surgeons have partially succeeded in regrowing breast tissue using a patient's own fat cells in 1 of 5 women involved in a pilot trial after cancer surgery. Surgeons implanted each woman with an acrylic breast-shaped chamber, into which they redirected blood vessels attached with the patient's fat cells from under her arm. The technique, called Neopec, has been tested on five women over the past 18 months in the hope it could help them regrow breasts after a mastectomy, as an alternative to silicone implants.More

Stem cell research soars
UCSB via Edhat
Biomedical research at UC Santa Barbara has catapulted to a position of leadership in the arena of stem cell biology, offering progress toward cures for vision diseases such as macular degeneration. Stem cell research has the potential to transform the practice of medicine, by replacing diseased tissue with healthy new cells. Interdisciplinary teams of UCSB researchers — including world-renowned faculty members recruited from the U.S. and Britain — are leading the charge. The university's newly renovated lab space is critical to the mission.More

Stem cell study probes cartilage injury and osteoarthritis
Researchers from Duke University Medical Center recently revealed that they have been able to engineer cartilage from pluripotent stem cells, which will help in studies regarding cartilage injury and osteoarthritis. In particular, the pluripotent stem cells were induced and then successfully developed to be used in tissue repair. The scientists believe that the induced pluripotent stem cells could become a source for patient-specific particular cartilage tissue. More

New bio-adhesive polymer demonstrated
A new video-article in JoVE, Journal of Visualized Experiments, details the use of a new laser-activated bio-adhesive polymer. The chitosan-based polymer, SurgiLux, was developed by scientists at the University of New South Wales. Chitosan is a polymer derived from chitin, which is found in fungal cell walls or in exoskeletons of crustaceans and insects. This molecular component allows SurgiLux to form low-energy bonds between the polymer and the desired tissue when it absorbs light. The technology may soon replace traditional sutures in the clinic.More

New procedure for bone tissue replacement
Simon Fraser University via Medical Xpress
A Simon Fraser University technology MBA graduate has developed a new procedure for bone tissue engineering and plans to use his newfound business acumen to take the research to the next level. Andre Wirthmann's research aims to benefit patients with bone defects who would normally require a conventional bone augmentation procedure. The process takes a small sample of the patient's tissue and grows it into a larger piece of bone, which is then implanted back into the patient. More

Watching the cogwheels of the biological clock in living cells
Our master circadian clock resides in a small group of about 10,000 neurons in the brain, called the suprachiasmatic nucleus. However, similar clocks are ticking in nearly all cells of the body, as demonstrated by the group of Ueli Schibler, professor at the Department of Molecular Biology of the University of Geneva, Switzerland. The molecular mechanisms of circadian clocks can thus be studied outside of the animals, in cultured cells.More

The future of orthopedics: Match the right patients and treatments
MedCity News
From a financial perspective, the market for orthopedic devices, procedures and tools has maintained steady growth over the last decade and is expected to see modest, single-digit growth over the next several years. But what about from an innovation perspective? This year's Cleveland Clinic Medical Innovations Summit, which is focused on orthopedic technologies, is set out to answer that questions. More