How artificial intelligence will change our lives

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Simon Worrall: We may not be aware of it, but machine learning is already an integral part of our daily lives, from the product choices that Amazon offers us to the surveillance of our data by the National Security Agency. Few of us understand it or the implications, however.

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3D printed thyroid gland implanted into mice

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With new advancements happening on a regular basis in the world of bioprinting, it’s hard to determine just which company is furthest ahead.  Is it Organovo, the publicly traded company already working to create 3D printed mini kidneys with Australian researchers? Or is it one of the many research institutions making advancements in 3D printing ear drums, blood vessels, or carbon composites for bone regeneration?  If one had to choose, they might lean towards 3D Bioprinting Solutions, who successfully 3D printed a thyroid gland, classified as an “organ construct”.  And, today, news leaked that the Russian company had taken their research one step further, implanting a 3D printed thyroid into mice.

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Flexible wearable sensor enables 24-hour blood flow monitoring

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The best medical devices for measuring blood flow today require the patient to first show up at a clinic or hospital, then stay very still during the imaging procedure. But an experimental sensor that clings to skin like a temporary tattoo could enable 24-hour monitoring of blood flow wherever a patient goes.

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Researchers develop new test that detects all viruses that infect people and animals

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There are some 320,000 unique mammalian viruses, according to estimates by virologists, and likely exponentially more existing on the planet today. Determining an accurate number would require billions more dollars and a great deal more manpower than is currently given to the study of viruses. Though a handful of viruses live in and on our bodies at all times—known as the virome—not all of them make us ill; just as often, they lie dormant. Many virus functions remain mysterious to scientists, such as how they enter a cell or replicate, though existing test advances, like the VirScan blood test, can tell you any infection you’ve ever had.

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Researchers at Stanford use Google Glass to treat autism in children

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Researchers at Stanford University are using the Google Glass to help autistic children recognize and classify emotions. The Autism Glass Project, a part of the Wall Lab in the Stanford School of Medicine, has launched the second phase of its study.

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Paralyzed man first to walk using brain power alone

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A paralyzed man is able to move using his brainpower thanks to a  ‘neural-bypass procedure’ that has been heralded a world first. Neurosurgeons achieved the world first by transmitting signals from the 26-year-old American’s brain to electrodes placed around both knees.

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Soon every doctor’s bag will contain a 3D printer

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3D4MD

Disruptive technology in the medical profession provides a much cheaper and more comfortable way of providing care. There have been articles about what we can print out in 3D today from equipment and casts to biomaterials and drugs. The 3D4MD team just demonstrated a perfect example of how such a technology can deliver care in regions where the lack of resources is an everyday problem.

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Precision medicine is much more than genetics

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Ricki Lewis, PhD: When President Obama uttered the words “Precision Medicine” in the state-of-the-union address, I scoffed at a politician’s finally noticing a field that’s been around for decades: medical genetics. Was it another case of rebranding, as chemistry has morphed into nanotech? But the definition of Precision Medicine that has emerged is, well, precise: “An approach to disease treatment and prevention that seeks to maximize effectiveness by taking into account individual variability in genes, environment, and lifestyle.”

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Within 30 years the computer will replace the human doctor

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A $1,000 computer will match processing speed of the human brain –  20 billion calculations per second – by 2020.  By 2030, it will simulate the brain power of a small village about 1,000 human minds. By 2048, it will have the brain power of the entire population of the U.S.

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IBM’s Watson is finally getting closer to becoming your doctor

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IBM’s Watson can beat Ken Jennings at Jeopardy, tell you about your city, and dream up recipes for delectable delicacies. Watson is now doing something even more important than all previous capabilities combined — it’s finally getting closer to becoming your doctor.

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World’s first 3D-printed drug to blow the field of personalized medicine wide open

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3D-printed widgets and other medical novelties clearly illustrate the potential of 3D printing. They are set to radically change the biotech and pharmaceutical industry. With its extreme versatility and inherent ability to customize products, many experts believe that 3D printing will finally blow the field of affordable personalized medicine wide open. Yet so far it’s been mostly hope — and plenty of hype — with little sign that the radical technology might actually become a medical mainstay.

 

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Leading scientists reveal secrets for reaching the age 100

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Leukocyte (white blood cell) telomere length in study participants up to 115 years of age. Statistical regression lines belonging to these groups are indicated by the same color as the data. (credit: Yasumichi Arai et al./EBioMedicine)

According scientists at Newcastle University’s Institute for Ageing in the U.K. and Keio University School of Medicine, they say they have cracked the secret of why some people live a healthy and physically independent life over the age of 100: keeping inflammation down and telomeres long.

 

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