Regardless of whether reading a book, enjoying nature, or driving on busy roads, the importance of one’s sight for one’s orientation and well-being is enormous.
Unfortunately, disease and infection can impair our sight and can even lead to blindness. The transplantation of a donor cornea can help in many cases.In Germany some 6,000 cornea transplant operations are performed annually.
The Fraunhofer Institute for Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP, in collaboration with the Eye Clinic of the Klinikum Chemnitz gGmbH and TU Dresden, is developing methods to sterilize conventional contact lens containers and to design them such that donor corneas can be securely embedded. This will improve the conditions for transport to the clinics. Work is also been undertaken to optimize the solutions that are used for storing the donor corneas.
This is only one example of the tasks being worked on in the Fraunhofer FEP’s biomedical laboratory unit which was founded at the end of last year. A wide range of medical products and equipment are being tested for their compatibility with the human body and adapted as appropriate. Scientists are pursuing new methods for disinfecting and sterilizing products using low-energy electrons, a key issue when using advanced medical products. Medical technology is in the meantime providing patients with advanced treatment methods, which put new requirements on materials and processes. Here the Fraunhofer FEP can call upon its expertise in developing coatings and modifying surfaces. The biomedical laboratory unit, which was funded by the European Fund for Regional Development, is operated under the close scientific supervision of Prof. Dr. Richard Funk, Director of the Institute for Anatomy of TU Dresden.
Due to the changing age structure of the populace and an increase in the number of people suffering from chronic illnesses, innovative solutions in medical technology are becoming ever more important. This sector already represents an important commercial area in Germany. Chancellor Angela Merkel recently called this sector a “lighthouse shining in the darkness of the crisis” (VDI nachrichten, Berlin, 7 May 2010), because the German medical technology industry continues to grow despite the current economic crisis. This sector in Germany now employs about 100,000 people and in 2008 had a turnover of 18 billion euros (SPECTARIS e. V. Branchenbericht 2009).
Small and medium-sized companies in particular give the Saxon medical technology industry stability. These companies, however, only have limited own funds to invest in R&D. Close collaboration with universities, research institutes, and regional industry is hence vital from a scientific and economic point of view.
Dr. Christiane Wetzel, head of the biomedical laboratory unit at the Fraunhofer FEP, believes that the networking of technical colleges and industry is essential: “In the area of medical technology there must be a closed process chain. The surgeons who perform the operations and the engineers who develop new medical products must communicate effectively in order to end up with optimal solutions for the patients.” Fraunhofer FEP Director, Prof. Volker Kirchhoff, adds: “We invite companies, and in particular small and medium-sized medical technology firms in Saxony, to work with us to develop new solutions.”
Scientific contact:Dr. Christiane Wetzel
Annett Arnold | idw
Decoding the genome's cryptic language
27.02.2017 | University of California - San Diego
New risk factors for anxiety disorders
24.02.2017 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg
On January 15, 2009, Chesley B. Sullenberger was celebrated world-wide: after the two engines had failed due to bird strike, he and his flight crew succeeded after a glide flight with an Airbus A320 in ditching on the Hudson River. All 155 people on board were saved.
On January 15, 2009, Chesley B. Sullenberger was celebrated world-wide: after the two engines had failed due to bird strike, he and his flight crew succeeded...
In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport
Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...
The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.
The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...
Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...
13.02.2017 | Event News
10.02.2017 | Event News
09.02.2017 | Event News
27.02.2017 | Materials Sciences
27.02.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research
27.02.2017 | Life Sciences