The technology, called BioLevitator, is an automated single-unit incubator and centrifuge and one of the first 3-D cell culture systems. It allows researchers to grow more cells in less time than two-dimensional systems and is closer to a natural in vivo environment. Through its efficiency, it also reduces the use of harsh chemicals and lab ware, making it safer for the environment than other systems.
BioLevitator was developed with support from U.Va.'s biomedical engineering student internship program and launched from the Darden School of Business Batten Business Incubator.
"The benchtop size and microprocessor-controlled and -monitored environment, coupled with innovative use of magnetic fields to maintain cells in suspension, makes the BioLevitator an innovative product in a very traditional field," said Dr. Shawn Levy, one of the magazine's judges.
The cell culture system was invented by U.Va. pathology professors Robin A. Felder and John Gildea, and was commercialized following incubation in the Darden Business School and mentorship in the T100 Alumni Mentoring Program [http://www.virginia.edu/vpr/industry/T100.html], under the direction of the Office of the Vice President for Research.
The technology, the centerpiece of Charlottesville-based Global Cell Solutions, is currently being sold around the world for a variety of applications, including stem cell research.
"Many of the needs for culturing a variety of cell types and performing complex drug discovery analysis have been met by this U.Va. invention," said Uday Gupta, president and CEO of Global Cell Solutions and a 2004 graduate of the Darden School. "The market response confirms this honor and we are very excited about the future."
"The University of Virginia has rapidly become a nationally prominent generator of new technology-based ventures," said Thomas C. Skalak, U.Va. vice president for research. "This accomplishment is a tribute to the company's leadership team and the University's collective efforts to encourage innovation and to identify novel solutions for the marketplace."
Aimed at a growing market for improved ways to grow stem cells and research cells, the technology already has demonstrated remarkable improvements in cell growth and in vivo-like qualities.
"We needed a new approach to growing human cells that reproduced conditions found in the human body and allowed for more productivity," Felder said. "The BioLevitator is addressing this need."
Fariss Samarrai | Newswise Science News
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The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...
Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.
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Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
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The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.
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