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Image: Chip with two seperate microcirculations. Next to it lies a one euro coin as a reference size; Copyright: Fraunhofer IWS

Microphysiological Systems: ethically correct and highly realistic

02/05/2017

Nobody wants to miss out on the blessing of modern medicine. But despite all of its advances, there is still one downside: animal testing. It's hotly contested for a variety of reasons. On the one hand, it is ethically questionable, while the transfer of results and application to humans is not always accurate on the other. The microphysiological systems of the Fraunhofer IWS offer an alternative.
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Picture: A green plastic frame, in which a picture of the lacewing eggs can be seen. Before this, a film is stretched, which consists of artificial silk of green lacewings; Copyright: Fraunhofer IAP

Artificial silk of green lacewings for medical technology

01/03/2017

Researchers have often "looked over nature’s shoulder", sometimes with amazing results. Now the lacewing was given this honor. The way they put their eggs on bend-resistant stems, researchers want to use for new films, globules or capsules. COMPAMED has asked how far the process has progressed.
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Image: A metal cylinder with a small blue-white flame coming from its tip; Copyright: FH Aachen

Surgery: precise incisions with microwave plasma

03/01/2017

Gentle surgical techniques support a faster patient recovery process. This also includes high-frequency surgery, where electric current passes through the body via the scalpel. This makes tiny, precise surgical cuts (incisions) possible and promotes vascular closure in the wound area. However, this technique is not without risk for the patient.
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Image: Computer-generated image of a head with an implant in the throat hit by ultrasonic waves; Copyright: Fraunhofer IBMT; Copyright: Fraunhofer IBMT

Ultrasound: energy source for active implants

02/11/2016

Implants require sufficient and permanent energy to function as desired. However, unlike a mobile phone or a camera, the size of the battery plays an important role in implants. Researchers are therefore looking for ways to deliver energy from outside.
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 Image: MRI-pictures of a brain. Left, a hand, holding a pen, pointing at an MRI-picture; Copyright: panthermedia.net/olegdudko

Nanoparticles for the MRI – Smart contrast agents

01/09/2016

Contrast agents improve the imaging of tissue made by MRI and thus are essential for getting more detailed imaging. But commonly used contrast agents, that are usually based on the metal gadolinium, cannot show enough contrast in early stage of diseases without increasing their concentration up to high levels.
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Graphic: Tiny robots with arms are swimming alondside red blood cells

Nanotechnology: a key to the future of medicine

01/07/2016

Even though the field of medical technology has already discovered the nanoworld a long time ago, it is still not as fully researched as it should be. Physicians dream about curing diseases such as cancer with an injection containing nanoparticles. But this is still a long way off in the future since research is continuously facing obstacles.
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Photo: Man wears a boilersuit

Sensor suit to alert you when your posture is bad

01/05/2016

SIRKA: this acronym stands for "sensor suit for individual feedback of physical activity". In a joint project, the DFKI is developing a suit designed to prevent problems with poor posture. Inertial sensors are integrated into a work overall. Physiotherapists are also meant to benefit from the results.
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Photo: Laboratory sample of a handpiece for temperature controlled laser coagulation

Laser Coagulation: an alternative to stitches

01/03/2016

Wounds in the oral and maxillofacial area are often difficult to suture. Sometimes only simple compression bandages are being used in the oral cavity, which temporarily close the wound. This is why the BI-TRE project, coordinated by the Fraunhofer ILT, is searching for a reliable post-surgical wound closure method.
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Laser: clean cuts with ultrashort pulses

04/01/2016

Ever-smaller medical devices with fine structures also necessitate ever more precise production processes. Lasers are used when mechanical machining processes are not precise enough. And manufacturers can cut sharply with ultrashort pulse lasers where conventional lasers are too inaccurate.
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Medical technology in Germany conquers new global markets

02/11/2015

The medical technology sector is booming – and not only in Germany. This fact gives domestic medical technology companies the opportunity to tap into global markets. On the one hand, this demand is due to an aging society and the need to make therapies and surgeries more tolerable and cost-effective for patients on the other.
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