Health Care

How does a long time in space affect human health?

As NASA astronaut Scott Kelly launches for the International Space Station Friday, March 27, Northwestern University scientists will be watching with more than a passing interest. Scott Kelly is half of their experiment. A Northwestern-led research team is one of 10 NASA-funded groups across the country studying identical twins Scott and Mark Kelly to learn how living in space for a long period of time — such as a mission to Mars — affects the human body. While Scott spends a year in space, his brother, Mark, also a veteran NASA astronaut, will remain on Earth, as a ground-based control.

The Anthem hack shows there is no such thing as privacy in the health care industry

Data breaches in the health care industry happen more often than you might think. The recent attack on Anthem exposed the personal information of about 80 million patients and is the largest data breach in the history of the industry.

New software analyzes human genomes for disease-causing variations in 90 minutes

Investigators at Nationwide Children’s Hospital say they have developed an optimized analysis “pipeline” that slashes the time it takes to search a person’s genome for disease-causing variations from weeks to hours.

3D Printers To Make Human Body Parts?

While the parts printed for humans so far have been fashioned from plastic, metal and other inorganic materials, researchers in California and elsewhere also have begun printing living tissue, with the goal of eventually employing these "bioprinters" to create customized kidneys, livers and other organs for people needing transplants. What's particularly attractive about the technology, according to its proponents, is that 3D printers can produce body parts much quicker and cheaper than other methods.

STEM and Medicine Are Driving Forces of the Fastest Growing College Majors in the U.S.

With STEM jobs typically being more lucrative, more students are seeking degrees in that field. But it is not just the lure of a large mid-career salary, as the STEM fields are known to be underemployed while several other career fields are competitive. But the college major with the second largest growth is in relation to the nation's emphasis on healthcare.

Technology is going to significantly transform medicine, with sensors monitoring body functions

My prediction is that 2015 will be the year in which tech takes baby steps in transforming medicine. The technologies that make this possible are advancing at exponential rates; their power and performance are increasing dramatically even as their prices fall and footprints shrink. The big leaps will start to happen at around the end of this decade.

Programmable 3D-printed tissues and organs using DNA smart glue

University of Texas at Austin researchers  have created “smart glue” based on DNA that could one day be used to 3D-print tissues to repair injuries or even create organs. They coated plastic (polystyrene or polyacrylamide) microparticles with 40 base pairs of DNA, forming gel-like materials that they could extrude from a 3D printer* to form solid shapes (up to centimeters in size).

US has been cutting medical research funding since 2004

The US’s investment in medical research between 2004 and 2012 declined significantly. The same can’t be said for the rest of the world, as global investment in biomedical research actually increased during that same period, according to a study published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

US stifles health innovation while it flourishes abroad

For hospital IT departments in the U.S., innovation often is not a priority. In a poll by the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives conducted last year, of 207 hospitals surveyed, only 9 percent said they spend more than 20 percent of their time on innovation. Eighty-nine percent of respondents said their organizations had no position directly responsible for innovation.

Ohio State researchers create DNA ‘Transformers’

Ohio State University researchers have figured out how to bend and fold DNA into tiny robot parts that could change the way doctors target drugs to damaged cells. Think Transformers, the robot toys-turned-movie stars that resemble one thing but change into something else when needed — except these nano-robots could help destroy disease one day.

3 Tech Trend Predictions for 2015

Seeing over 800+ startup ideas over the course of the year as we do at Nest, we are very aware of the most prominent and immediate problems that entrepreneurs are trying to solve. Through them, we are able to see the future! We are also able to tell which problems investment can solve. With this in mind, here are the areas in which I believe there will be massive change in 2015:

University of Maryland School of Medicine Conducts Human Trial of Experimental Ebola Virus Vaccine

Myron M. Levine, MD, DTPH, director of the University of Maryland School of Medicine Center for Vaccine Development (CVD), and Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, announced today the start of a clinical trial in Baltimore to evaluate different dosage levels of a promising experimental Ebola vaccine developed by the Vaccine Research Center (VRC) of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

Former House Members Say R&D Credit, Device Tax Likely to Be Addressed in 2015

Congress probably won't take up the research and development tax credit or the medical device tax in the lame duck session, but is likely to address both taxes in the next session as part of a larger discussion on corporate tax reform, former lawmakers said Nov. 6 during a post-election briefing.

Health Care Summit Highlights New Innovation

Imagine reading blood test results through an app on your iPhone. Or maybe you’re connecting online with a doctor and getting a late-night diagnosis via teleconference. The future of health care filled the conversations on October 22, during the 3rd Annual Health Care Summit hosted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation.

Why wearable tech could pose health risks

Internet-connected glasses, smart watches and health monitoring gadgets put wireless technology right on the body, increasing exposure to radio waves among consumers who are already carrying wireless smartphones, tablets and laptops. The good news is that most wearables use Bluetooth technology, which emits much lower levels of radiofrequency, or RF, than cellular-based smartphones and other devices that use Wi-Fi.


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