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Sep 3, 2015

The Future Of Health: Precision Medicine

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics, health

You may have heard of precision medicine in the news, but what actually is it, and what could it mean for the future of healthcare?

In the past, medicine was geared for the masses and was applied to large numbers of people, on the basis of average effectiveness. If a particular substance was ineffective on 10% of the population, it could still pass through and be prescribed anyway. Before genomics, it was tricky to understand or postulate why people had such varied responses to medication, but now we have the right tools — things are changing.

While all humans have extremely similar genes in percentage terms, there are distinct differences in each of us that create our particular vulnerabilities and characteristics. We also respond differently to many treatments; a cure for one might be mediocre for another. This is particularly true for cancer. With the Precision Medicine Initiative taking off, taking into account genetics, lifestyle and environment is beginning to give us an edge — making medicine more accurate and effective.

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Sep 3, 2015

V1.0: A Network Edition is here!

Posted by in categories: energy, neuroscience, transportation

The brain of a honey bee uses about ~0.1mW of power. While the brain of a self driving car ~100W. That’s a power factor of about one million. We’ve got a very long way to go.


V1.0: A Network Edition is here! http://ow.ly/RAI4k.

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Sep 3, 2015

Delivering Drugs And Removing Toxins With 3-D Printed Micro-Robots

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, biotech/medical, nanotechnology, robotics/AI

Nanotechnology and 3-D printing are two fields that have huge potential in general, but manipulating this technology and using it in biology also has tremendous and exciting prospects. In a promising prototype, scientists have created micro-robots shaped like fish which are thinner than a human hair, and can be used to remove toxins, sense environments or deliver drugs to specific tissue.

These tiny fish were formed using a high resolution 3-D printing technology directed with UV light, and are essentially aquatic themed sensing, delivery packages. Platinum particles that react with hydrogen peroxide push the fish forward, and iron oxide at the head of the fish can be steered by magnets; both enabling control of where they ‘swim’ off to. And there you have it — a simple, tiny machine that can be customised for various medical tasks.

In a test of concept, researchers attached polydiacetylene (PDA) nanoparticles to the body, which binds with certain toxins and fluoresces in the red spectrum. When these fish entered an environment containing these toxins, they did indeed fluoresce and neutralised the compounds.

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Sep 3, 2015

Hawking offers new solution to ‘black hole information paradox’ | KurzweilAI.net

Posted by in category: physics

Black-hole-model1


“Addressing a current controversy in physics about information in black holes, “I propose that the information is stored not in the interior of the black hole as one might expect, but on its boundary, the event horizon.””

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Sep 3, 2015

Dramatic Advances In Super-Resolution Imaging:

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

Dramatic Advances In Super-Resolution Imaging:

Advances in imaging and microscopy are enabling us to see an unparalleled level of detail inside living cells — exposing their intricate inner workings to us real-time for the first time.

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Sep 3, 2015

This 11-Foot Robot Transformer Becomes a 40-Mph Car

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, transportation

Optimus sublime.

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Sep 3, 2015

Completely paralyzed man voluntarily moves his legs, UCLA scientists report

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, robotics/AI

Mark Pollock and trainer Simon O’Donnell (credit: Mark Pollock)

A 39-year-old man who had been completely paralyzed for four years was able to voluntarily control his leg muscles and take thousands of steps in a “robotic exoskeleton” device during five days of training, and for two weeks afterward, UCLA scientists report.

This is the first time that a person with chronic, complete paralysis has regained enough voluntary control to actively work with a robotic device designed to enhance mobility.

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Sep 3, 2015

Silk bio-ink could help advance tissue engineering with 3-D printers

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, biotech/medical, engineering

Advances in 3-D printing have led to new ways to make bone and some other relatively simple body parts that can be implanted in patients. But finding an ideal bio-ink has stalled progress toward printing more complex tissues with versatile functions. Now scientists have developed a silk-based ink that could open up new possibilities toward that goal.

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Sep 2, 2015

Rethinking ‘The Martian’: Why Dust Storms Wouldn’t Sabotage A Real Mars Mission

Posted by in categories: entertainment, space

Matt Damon stars as a NASA astronaut stranded on the Martian surface in the forthcoming film adaptation of Andy Weir’s “The Martian.” Credit: Twentieth Century Fox. Matt Damon stars as a NASA astronaut stranded on the Martian surface in the forthcoming film adaptation of Andy Weir’s The Martian. Credit: Twentieth Century Fox.

Martian dust storms rank among the most impressive in our Solar System. But no matter how menacing they appear from Mars orbit, they’re not likely to cause astronauts to abort future surface missions, says a planetary scientist who studies the phenomena.

Although such storms routinely engulf large swaths of the Red Planet for days at a time, any emergency serious enough to evacuate a crew isn’t likely to be triggered by a dust storm of the sort depicted in the forthcoming film adaptation of Andy Weir’s novel The Martian.

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Sep 2, 2015

NASA And The Politics Of Going Back To The Moon

Posted by in category: space travel

A year ahead of the 2016 U.S. presidential election, it’s amazing at how small a role the American space program has played during this tempestuous summer of early primary campaigning.

It’s certain that NASA will live long and prosper no matter who’s ultimately elected as our 45th president; the American space agency has done so for 50-plus years. But even in this burgeoning age of commercial space development, political catchphrases such as “Back to the Moon and on to Mars;” “Capture an asteroid and on to Mars;” or even bypass the Moon and “Go directly to Mars” somehow still ring hollow.

On the morning of the recent booster test launch of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS), I watched NASA Administrator Charles Bolden enthusiastically describe the new launch system. He noted NASA’s goal of using the new system to capture a large boulder from a near Earth asteroid and bring it back to a stable lunar orbit. This planned Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) as it’s now called would happen by the middle of the next decade. Then by the 2030s, NASA would re-purpose SLS for a manned mission to Mars. But such massive undertakings still need political will and the funding that goes with it.

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