The selection was severe: of 300 proposals the EC received only 15 were funded; of them, the only one dealing with on musculoskeletal apparatus was submitted by the international consortium VPHOP, coordinated by the Rizzoli Orthopaedic Institute (Bologna, Italy).
“The VPHOP project” – says Marco Viceconti, coordinator of this international initiative “in the next four years will develop the next generation of technology for diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis, one of the most serious diseases which may affect the musculoskeletal apparatus, nowadays”.
In 2007 about four million osteoporotic bone fractures costed the European health system more than € 30 billions. This figure could double by 2050, if we do not improve the current standards of care. (Source: International Osteoporosis Foundation http://www.iofbonehealth.org/facts-and-statistics.html).
“The first generation of computer models is currently entering in clinical use; the main companies in this sector are investing in the instrumentation for the evaluation of bone risk fracture based on technologies that the research laboratories developed in the past years. Meanwhile, VPHOP will develop, validate and deploy the next generation of technologies for 100% personalised healthcare”.
The 19 public and private organisations that form the VPHOP consortium, such as Philips Healthcare or the Federal Institute of Technology Zurich, gathered for the project kick-off at the Rizzoli Orthopaedic Institute last Sept 8th-9th. 60 experts in informatics, bioengineering, medical physics, and medical research met to plan this ambitious project.
“Each of the partner organisations has already a technology prototype that represents the worldwide excellence in that particular domain. The aim of the project is to create, with all these technologies, an integrated solution to be used in the clinical practice and through which it will be possible to gather all available patient information (life-style, physical activity level, neuromotor condition, bone type and shape, status of the diseased tissue, cellular activity, presence of specific molecules) into a unifying computer model capable of predicting on one side the fracture risk with an excellent accuracy, on the other one the effects that the various treatment options will have on that particular patient”.
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25.09.2017 | Case Western Reserve University
At the productronica trade fair in Munich this November, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be presenting Laser-Based Tape-Automated Bonding, LaserTAB for short. The experts from Aachen will be demonstrating how new battery cells and power electronics can be micro-welded more efficiently and precisely than ever before thanks to new optics and robot support.
Fraunhofer ILT from Aachen relies on a clever combination of robotics and a laser scanner with new optics as well as process monitoring, which it has developed...
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
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