• Ebola-fighting Device Announced Out of Harvard

    A new “biospleen” device being developed by scientists at Harvard University may help Ebola patients, according to a recent Washington Post article.Researchers at Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering developed the blood-cleansing device to combat sepsis. More than a decade earlier, other scientists wrote in the Journal of Infectious Diseases that some aspects of the Ebola virus mimic the activity of severe bacterial infections, leading to septic shock, in which the...
  • Robots with Super Dexterity Could Be Game Changer for Medtech

    Updated September 29, 2014Robots—including those in both manufacturing and surgery—may end up showing more dexterity than ever, thanks to a wave of sensor advances.GelSight CEO Bill Yost, for example, sees potential in the space for the MIT-developed sensor technology the Cambridge, MA–based company has been seeking to commercialize, even though the company is concentrating on other sectors for now.GelSight might show promise determining whether skin cells or cancerous, or conducting a...
  • How Medical Extrusion is Enabling Optimization of Endovascular Devices

    The development of vascular access and delivery devices demands careful consideration of the best combination of material and dimensions while accounting for the harsh conditions of the human anatomy.By Jennifer Fauria and Andrew TabordaExtrusion for new endovascular technologies is challenged by anatomical demands.The human vascular system presents uniquely demanding conditions: A high blood pressure environment is paired with elastic smooth muscle tissue, allowing vessels to expand while...
  • Engineer Steals Millions of Files from GE Healthcare

    Large medical device companies may have more reason to look at how they secure their proprietary information after a recent case in which a computer engineer admitted to stealing roughly 2.4 million files of corporate secrets from a Wisconsin subsidiary of GE Healthcare and sent them to China, states GE and the FBI.A federal judge in Eastern Wisconsin on September 3 issued a permanent injunction against Jun Xie, a former pulse sequence diagram engineer at GE Healthcare in Waukesha, barring Xie...
  • How Your iPad Could Become a Visual Therapy Device

    Ever think that strapping an iPad to your face would be a good idea?A design firm from Toronto does. The company has created an inexpensive headset that can turn your iPad Mini, as well as the soon-to-be released iPhone 6, into a portable virtual reality device—with benefits potentially extending to the medical field, assuming the device makes it the market.AirVR is a Kickstarter project seeking $20,000 in funding to deliver an inexpensive, portable headset containing two lenses that can...
  • IBM's Watson Teams Up with the Mayo Clinic

    Last week Mayo Clinic announced a partnership with IBM, with plans to use its cognitive computer known as Watson to help match patients with appropriate clinical trials more efficiently than ever before.Researchers believe that the advanced speed with which Watson can match patients to appropriate clinical trials can help patients find specific treatments more quickly, and possibly lead to speedier discoveries and alternative treatment options. The Mayo Clinic will begin with research studies...
  • Is This Cyborg the First of Many?

    In an age where technology continues to shrink, we constantly search for new ways to better fit devices into our purses and pockets, around our wrists and strapped to our heads. It wasn’t until recently we began exploring the possibilities of implantable technology, and with that came what might be the world’s very first cyborg. Neil Harbisson (Photo courtesy of Wikipedia)In a recent interview with CNN, readers were introduced to Neil Harbisson, the world’s first legally recognized cyborg...
  • Jetting Toward More Precise Fluid Dispensing

    The medical device industry may have been stuck on pretty simple ways of applying adhesives. But innovation is finally on the way—with product miniaturization needs and regulatory scrutiny forcing medtech companies to become increasingly sophisticated.Granted, half of medical device makers are still using manual dispensing technology for adhesives, according to a recent poll. Traditional contact-based manual dispensing is a process most kindergarteners using Elmer’s glue would recognize. A...
  • NIH Website Offers 3-D Printing Models

    3-D printing is the buzzword of the hour. But many doctors, educators, and scientists cannot create their own CAD models to get the 3-D ball rolling. To address this need, the National Institutes of Health (NIH)—together with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute for Child Health and Human Development, and the National Library of Medicine—has established a platform for exchanging 3-D printable biomedical models.The NIH 3D Print...
  • Apple to Test HealthKit on Diabetics

    Apple is on the cusp of launching clinical trials with diabetics and chronic disease patients using their patented HealthKit app, as they prepare to launch their vision that could streamline the process of sharing medical information.Apple has partnered with Stanford University Hospital and Duke University Hospital as they look to begin rolling out their HealthKit platform, an app that could create a sort of health dashboard. HealthKit works by gathering data from a multiple of sources, and...
  • How Nanotech Could Boost Breast Cancer Detection

    Scientists have developed an innovative “electronic skin” that can detect and image small lumps in a woman’s breast that normal manual exams miss, allowing for earlier detection of breast cancer.The device has been tested on a breast model made of silicone, and allows doctors to see smaller lumps, and image them to understand whether or not the lump is cancerous, according to a statement from American Chemical Society.The electronic skin is made out of nanoparticles and polymers that can image...
  • Why Google's Foray into Quantum Physics Could Reshape Medtech

    Google is on the verge of beginning the design and construction of their own hardware for a quantum computer, a machine designed to use quantum physics to solve problems that conventional computers cannot.Image of a quantum coreThe benefits of quantum computing machines are still being discovered, but the general understanding is that a machine powered by quantum physics can solve problems, process data, and execute algorithms much faster than a conventional machine. This is because qubits can...
  • 7 of the Most Audacious Medtech Predictions

    Sometimes, being audacious can be a good thing. After all, the word simply means “showing a willingness to take surprisingly bold risks” according to the Oxford dictionary.Think of President John F. Kennedy’s famous words from 1961: “I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth.”Medtech has its own idealists these days making moonshot predictions. Here are seven of the...
  • The Renewed Importance of Medical Device Startups

    The economic crisis of 2008 and regulatory pressures has hit medical device startups hard, making it increasingly difficult for them to translate their ideas into commercially viable products that pass regulatory muster.In the past several years, however, software startups in the consumer tech industry have thrived. This year, thousands of software developers will produce more than $30 billion worth in apps, as the shrinking costs of computing software and small-scale manufacturing generate...
  • Did Apple Just Make the Fitness Tracker Obsolete?

    It turns out that the upcoming Apple Watch includes fitness tracking ability that could set it beyond the Fitbit, Jawbone, and other devices on the market.Apple Watch users will be able to capture their own heartbeat and send it to others. (Image courtesy of Apple.)Apple CEO Tim Cook among many other things touted the Apple Watch as a "comprehensive health and fitness companion" during a Tuesday morning unveiling that also included the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus—as well as an Apple Pay...
  • How a Medtech Engineer Became an Entrepreneur

    An engineer with 25 years of experience in the medical device industry, Robert Torgerson decided to change career paths in 2013 by creating his own company: a medical-grade fiber specialist named RxFiber LLC (Windsor, CA).Now the CEO of that firm, Torgerson must be doing something right: the company has recently won two awards and their technology was featured in a presentation at the annual Society for Biomaterials meeting. Last year, the firm’s novel microfiber, RxFibron HT, won UBM Canon’s...
  • The Technology Making Telepathy a Reality

    A team of international researchers have built a human-to-human, brain-to-brain interface that will allow two humans to consciously communicate with each other without any additional social cues.The development—reported in ExtremeTech and recently published in PLoS ONE—is one of several recent examinations into devices that can read brain activity, but the first of its kind to establish a communication connection without speech. Recently, one researcher attached with a brain-computer interface...
  • New Software Might Make Google Glass a Personal Health Tool

    Google Glass could become a personal health tool. Despite eschewing biomarker capabilities, researchers are investigating how the head-mounted technology can collect personal health information by using visual and gyroscopic detections.Research groups at Affective Computing Group in the MIT Media Lab and Georgia Institute of Technology have completed a test of sensors embedded in Google Glass to track the wearer’s physiological signals. Bioglass gathers data by using gyroscopic...
  • Signs You're a Medtech Engineer: Readers Chime In

    We recently put together a featured titled "20 Signs You Are a Medtech Engineer," and asked our audience for feedback. Here are some of the amusing submissions we have received thus far:Image courtesy of Museum of HealthcareWhen left alone in your doctor's examination room, you look through the drawers and play with the Otoscope. You yell at the TV when the doctors on TV shows are using the equipment incorrectly. You explain to your primary care doctor the how to obtain more reliable...
  • 20 Signs You Are a Medtech Engineer

    Here at Qmed, we hear a lot of industry insiders joke about the quirks of being a medtech engineer. Here are 20 gems on the subject:You have the same type of notebook as your first graders, but you call yours an "engineering notebook." Catheter scale image courtesy of Creganna Tactx Medical.You don't speak French, but you know what French catheter sizes are. Although you know a good deal about medicine, the only thing you can diagnose is caffeine withdrawal. You find catheters...