Figure 1. Despite being known for entertainment, Disney has also gained an edge in technological research via 3D printing and modeling. Shown here is one of the compliant mechanisms created in a study from Disney’s research division.

New Disney Study Suggests More Effective 3D Printing Designs

By Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Compliant mechanisms are mechanisms that can transfer forces or displacements to other points along their bodies. 3D printing can be used to quickly and effectively design compliant mechanisms for commercial use, but more work is needed to understand how such devices can be printed. Doctor Bernhard Thomaszewski and researchers from Disney Research Zurich in Switzerland devised a computational tool that would … Continue reading New Disney Study Suggests More Effective 3D Printing Designs

Figure 1. Lutein is a naturally occurring pigment found within foods such as kiwifruits. A study from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign suggests that an intake of lutein can reduce cognitive decline in adults.

The Effects of Carotenoids on Cognitive Ability

By Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Lutein — a carotenoid or pigment from green foods such as spinach and kiwifruit — can be quantified in central nervous system tissue, making it a useful way of evaluating diet’s effect on the brain. However, scientists are still determining whether higher lutein amounts yield cognitive ability improvements. Doctor Naiman A. Khan and researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign … Continue reading The Effects of Carotenoids on Cognitive Ability

Figure 1. Scientists strive to create wearable smart devices that can detect physiological phenomena in real time. According to a study from UC Berkeley, new ear devices can be 3D printed and used to indicate patients’ true body temperatures.

3D-Printed Ear Devices Detect Core Body Temperature

By Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Healthcare sensors are frequently used to detect skin temperature, but more research is needed to design a device that can pinpoint core body temperature levels and help doctors predict the likelihood of fever, fatigue, and other physiological phenomena. Professor Ali Javey and researchers at the University of California, Berkeley designed a printable smart device that — when placed on a patient’s … Continue reading 3D-Printed Ear Devices Detect Core Body Temperature

Figure 1. Pleocytosis (shown here) is an increased cell count — particularly an increase in white blood cell (WBC) count — in a bodily fluid such as cerebrospinal fluid (CSF).

Neutrophilic Pleocytosis is Connected to Viral CNS Infections

By Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Viral central nervous system (CNS) infections are often associated with cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) lymphocytic pleocytosis, or an increase in the fluid’s white blood cell count. However, these infections are also connected to neutrophilic pleocytosis, an increase in the fluid’s neutrophil count. The clinical and prognostic significance of CSF neutrophilic pleocytosis remains unknown in patients. Doctor Siraya Jaijakul and researchers at the … Continue reading Neutrophilic Pleocytosis is Connected to Viral CNS Infections

Capsule Robots Can Be Used for Biosensor Implantation

By Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Biosensors have become increasingly practical within the medical field, as they can detect different biometrics such as heart rate and body temperature levels. However, current biosensors can wear out quickly and elicit health problems such as trauma. Many efforts — especially in the area of capsule robotics — have been made to develop biosensors that are noninvasive and effective at monitoring … Continue reading Capsule Robots Can Be Used for Biosensor Implantation

Figure 1. Research now suggests that fungi, after being genetically engineered to produce spider and scorpion toxins, could help eliminate malaria-carrying mosquitoes.

Arthropod Toxins Used to Engineer Mosquito-Killing Fungi

By Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Mosquitoes are known to transmit potent diseases — particularly malaria and dengue fever — among humans. The impact of these diseases is most apparent in sub-Saharan Africa, where over 200 million cases of malaria are reported annually. Many disease control programs in the region have used broad-spectrum insecticides to eliminate mosquitoes and reduce the spread of vector-borne diseases. However, malarial mosquitoes … Continue reading Arthropod Toxins Used to Engineer Mosquito-Killing Fungi

Figure 1: Shown here is an example of Scopulariopsis, a genus of fungi capable of living in the absence of soil, air, plant debris, and dung. A new species of this fungi was recently discovered in cotton plants in Hangzhou, China.

Combination Therapies Reduce Treg Functions in CHC Patients

by Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Regulatory T-Cells, or Tregs, are important contributors to the development of chronic hepatitis C (CHC) infections in patients. Oral antiviral agents are the most common treatments for CHC infections in most Western countries, while pegylated interferon (PEG-IFN) treatment is the standard therapy in many Asian countries. PEG-IFNs are interferons that attach to polyethylene glycol molecules to trigger sustained virological responses (SVR) … Continue reading Combination Therapies Reduce Treg Functions in CHC Patients

Figure 1: Researchers at the Yokohama City University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan used computational fluid dynamics (shown) to analyze the flow distribution of anticancer agent into the branches of the external carotid artery during intra-arterial chemotherapy.

Computational Fluid Dynamics Can Be Used to Treat Oral Cancer

by Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Surgical procedures have often been used to treat oral cancer. However, these procedures can cause oral dysfunction — often in the form of speech and breathing difficulties — and thereby harm respiratory organs. To preserve organ function, intra-arterial chemotherapy (IAC) has become a valuable form of treatment. IAC releases more anticancer agents into tumor-feeding arteries than intravenous systemic chemotherapy. However, anticancer … Continue reading Computational Fluid Dynamics Can Be Used to Treat Oral Cancer

Figure 1: Pegylated-interferon (PEG-IFN) treatment is the standard therapy for chronic hepatitis C in Asian countries; it is sometimes performed as part of a combination therapy with ribavirin (RBV), but more research is needed to understand how Treg function is affected in patients.

New Species of Fungi Discovered in Chinese Cotton Plants

by Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Dr. Xiao-Lin Li and researchers at Zhejiang University in China recently discovered a new fungal species, now identified as Scopulariopsis gossypii. The species was found in the vascular bundles of cotton plants infected by Verticillium dahlia, a pathogen of economic importance throughout the city of Hangzhou. Scientists have already associated the genus Scopulariopsis with fungi that are isolated from air and … Continue reading New Species of Fungi Discovered in Chinese Cotton Plants

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The Effects of Insecticidal Nets on Asymptomatic Malaria in India

Caleb Sooknanan ‘20 Over the past decade, mosquitoes have been subject to many vector control strategies in order to control the spread of Malaria. Long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs) have been among the most effective, as their distribution has reduced global malaria morbidity by 45% since 2000. However, a large proportion of malarial infections remain asymptomatic, likely preventing malaria elimination programs from being executed to the … Continue reading The Effects of Insecticidal Nets on Asymptomatic Malaria in India