NEWS & EVENTS
When a muscles contracts it generates electricity. This electrical activity remains in the muscles of an amputated limb. It has long been a goal to use these natural muscle signals to enhance the control of hand and arm prosthetics. Previously, researchers did this by attaching two external sensors to the surface of the skin of the residual limb. The sensors were connected to a prosthesis controller by wires.
NIBIB-funded researcher, Robert Langer, a biomedical engineer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has won the $500,000 Kyoto Prize for Advanced Technology. Read more at the Boston Globe
Mesenchymal stem cells can differentiate into bone, fat and muscle, making them potentially useful for stem-cell based therapies to repair diseased or damaged tissue. NIBIB-supported researchers at Harvard Medical School found that the ability of these cells to repair tissue is greatly enhanced when they are transplanted along with blood vessel-forming cells in experiments in mice. Read more at Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News...
Scientists at the University of Kentucky, led by nano-biotechnologist Peixuan Guo, have made some critical discoveries over the past year into the operation of biomotors, the molecular machines used by viruses and bacteria in the packaging of DNA. Read more at University of Kentucky
Four doctoral students at Washington University in St. Louis will have the opportunity to take a closer look at the intersection of biology and mechanics under a five-year grant from NIBIB. Mechanobiology is a developing field that focuses on how forces and changes in cell or tissue mechanical properties contribute to growth, structure and health. Read the full press release at engineering.wustl.edu.
Researchers have developed a new supercooling technique to increase the amount of time human organs could remain viable outside the body. This study was conducted in rats, and if it succeeds in humans, it would enable a world-wide allocation of donor organs, saving more lives. Read more at BBC
NIBIB Director Roderic Pettigrew discussed NIH-supported research advances in assistive robotics and treatment of spinal cord injury during a Capitol Hill briefing on "Rethinking Spinal Cord Injury". The meeting was the latest in a series of neuroscience briefings hosted by AAAS in conjunction with Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-Pa.), and through the support of the Dana Foundation. Read the full story at AAAS.org/news.
NIBIB grantee Mark Chance of Case Western University and colleagues have discovered how a family of proteins regulates an important cellular cycle where a cell's generated energy is converted to necessary functions, a finding with potential to lead to significant breakthroughs in treatment of Parkinson's, chronic liver and heart diseases. Read more at www.buisiness-standard.com.
NIBIB grantee David Mooney of Harvard University and his colleagues have identified a possible mechanism by which normal cells turn malignant in mammary epithelial tissues, the tissues frequently involved in breast cancer. Read the full press release at www.harvard.edu