Shana Leonard's blog

Weekly Vitals: Ossur Shines at Olympics, 'Smart' Devices Give Patients Power, and More

Posted by Shana Leonard on August 15, 2012
Among the most-talked-about stories at this year's London Olympics was that of South African Sprinter Oscar Pistorius. A double amputee, Pistorius simultaneously won over crowds and fellow athletes alike and generated debate as to whether his artificial limbs, made by Ossur, gave him any sort of unfair advantage. Plus, the Wall Street Journal examined smart prostheses and other medical devices....Continue

Anemia-Detecting Cell Phone Device Could Impact Pregnant Moms, Newborns in Developing Countries

Posted by Shana Leonard on August 9, 2012
Innovative and tech-savvy university researchers have been pioneering the development of low-cost medical devices that leverage cell phones, which are often much more accessible in developing countries than traditional medical devices or technologies....Continue

Bioactive Coating Improves Efficacy, Longevity of Implants for Deep Brain Stimulation

Posted by Shana Leonard on August 9, 2012
Deep brain stimulation has emerged as an exciting and promising field for treating both neurological and psychological disorders ranging from Parkinson's disease to depression. But the long-term viability of implants designed for DBS remains uncertain as current electrodes tend to induce an immune response in the patient's body that reduces the treatment's efficacy over time....Continue

Weekly Vitals: Chick-fil-A and the Medical Device Industry, Medtech M&A, and More

Posted by Shana Leonard on August 8, 2012
Former Vante CFO Adam Smith brought some unexpected controversy to the doorstep of his employer, a supplier to the medical device industry, this past week. Smith gained national attention when he posted a video on YouTube that went viral showing him berate an employee of the fast-food chain Chick-fil-A for working for the company, whose president, Dan Cathy, has openly opposed same-sex marriage. Smith was fired and issued an apology following the uproar. In other news, MPMN explores the driving factors behind M&A activity in the sector....Continue

Synthetic Jellyfish Represents Advance in Tissue Engineering

Posted in Biotechnology by Shana Leonard on July 25, 2012
Novel engineering efforts by a California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and Harvard University research team have yielded a tissue-engineered artificial jellyfish, dubbed Medusoid, that provides insight into the design of bioinspired pumps....Continue

America's Got (Medtech) Talent, Doesn't It?

Posted in Research and Development by Shana Leonard on July 24, 2012
Among the vulnerabilities potentially jeopardizing U.S. dominance in the global medical device market is a “large and growing talent and development gap,” according to a recent industry analysis on Qmed’s sister site, MD+DI. But is there really a 'human talent' deficit in the U.S., or has talent just been displaced?...Continue

Weekly Vitals: FDA Spies on Employees, St. Jude Stays Strong, and More

Posted by Shana Leonard on July 20, 2012
FDA was the subject of widespread controversy this week—but not for the usual reasons. The agency launched a "wide-ranging surveillance operation against a group of its own scientists used as an enemies list of sorts as it secretly captured thousands of e-mails that the disgruntled scientists sent privately to members of Congress, lawyers, labor officials, journalists, and even President Obama," according to the New York Times. Also this week, St....Continue

St. Jude CRM Stays Strong Despite Endless Controversy, Scrutiny, and Bad Press

Posted by Shana Leonard on July 18, 2012
It's been a rough year so far for St. Jude Medical's cardiac rhythm management (CRM) business, which has dealt with the high-profile Riata lead recall fallout, quelled fears about the Durata lead, launched a 'scorched-earth' campaign against Medtronic, and battled a barrage of bad press all in just a six-month period....Continue

Terahertz Signal-Generating Technology Could 'See' Skin Cancer, Enhance Medical Imaging

Posted in Medical Imaging by Shana Leonard on July 18, 2012
Researchers at Cornell University (Ithaca, NY) have developed tunable solid-state terahertz sources that employ inexpensive CMOS technology. This chip-based approach, according to the scientists, could enhance medical imaging applications and may even allow for the development of scanners capable of identifying skin cancer indicators that are invisible to the naked eye....Continue

Weekly Vitals: User Fees Feedback, FDA's Pre-Subs, and More

Posted by Shana Leonard on July 13, 2012
Although we're heading into the summer doldrums, it proved to be a relatively big week for FDA. In the wake of President Obama signing MDUFA legislation, a contributing analyst for Forbes questioned the efficacy of user fees and noted that they didn't seem to be improving productivity at the agency....Continue
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