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Category Archives: BioEngineering
Biomedical engineering, or bioengineering, is the application of engineering principles to the fields of biology and health care. Bioengineers work with doctors, therapists and researchers to develop systems, equipment and devices in order to solve clinical problems.
Biomedical engineers have developed a number of life-enhancing and life-saving technologies. These include:
The practice of biomedical engineering has a long history. One of the earliest examples is a wood and leatherprosthetic toefound on a 3,000-year-old Egyptian mummy. Before that, even simple crutches and walking sticks were a form of engineered assistive devices, and the first person to fashion a splint for a broken bone could be considered to have been an early biomedical engineer.
Biomedical engineering has evolved over the years in response to advancements in science and technology. Throughout history, humans have made increasingly more effective devices to diagnose and treat diseases and to alleviate, rehabilitate or compensate for disabilities or injuries. One example is the evolution of hearing aids to mitigate hearing loss through sound amplification. Theear trumpet, a large horn-shaped device that was held up to the ear, was the only "viable form" of hearing assistance until the mid-20th century, according to the Hearing Aid Museum. Electrical devices had been developed before then, but were slow to catch on, the museum said on its website.
The works ofAlexander Graham BellandThomas Edisonon sound transmission and amplification in the late 19th and early 20th centuries were applied to make the first tabletop hearing aids. These were followed by the first portable (or "luggable") devices using vacuum-tube amplifiers powered by large batteries. However, the first wearable hearing aids had to await the development of the transistor byWilliam Shockleyand his team at Bell Laboratories. Subsequent development of micro-integrated circuits and advance battery technology has led to miniature hearing aids that fit entirely within the ear canal.
Some notable figures in the history of biomedical engineering and their contributions include:
Biomedical engineers design and develop medical systems, equipment and devices. According to theU.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics(BLS), this requires in-depth knowledge of the operational principles of the equipment (electronic, mechanical, biological, etc.) as well as knowledge about the application for which it is to be used. For instance, in order to design an artificial heart, an engineer must have extensive knowledge ofelectrical engineering,mechanical engineeringandfluid dynamicsas well as an in-depth understanding of cardiology and physiology. Designing a lab-on-a-chip requires knowledge of electronics, nanotechnology, materials science and biochemistry. In order to design prosthetic replacement limbs, expertise in mechanical engineering and material properties as well as biomechanics and physiology is essential.
The critical skills needed by a biomedical engineer include a well-rounded understanding of several areas of engineering as well as the specific area of application. This could include studying physiology, organic chemistry, biomechanics or computer science. Continuing education and training are also necessary to keep up with technological advances and potential new applications.
Most biomedical engineering jobs require at least a bachelor's degree in biomedical engineering, according to the BLS. Many employers also require state certification as a professional engineer. A master's degree is often required for promotion to management, and ongoing education and training are needed to keep up with advances in technology, testing and monitoring equipment, computer hardware and software, and government regulations.
According toSalary.com, as of July 2014 the salary range for a newly graduated biomedical engineer with a bachelor's degree is $35,213 to $64,371. The range for a mid-level engineer with a master's degree and five to 10 years of experience is $51,404 to $84,098; and the range for a senior engineer with a master's degree or doctorate and more than 15 years of experience is $82,490 to $112,063. Many experienced engineers with advanced degrees are promoted to management positions where they can earn even more.
TheBLSprojects that employment of biomedical engineers will grow 27 percent from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations. Demand will be strong because an aging population is likely to need more medical care and because of increased public awareness of biomedical engineering advances and their benefits, according to the BLS.
Jim Lucas is a freelance writer and editor specializing in physics, astronomy and engineering. He is general manager ofLucas Technologies.
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What Is Biomedical Engineering? | Live Science
Campus and Community
ByKristen Bailey | October 16, 2020 Atlanta, GA
Click image to enlarge
The Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience will host a conversation next week with two campus leaders on the topic of Covid-19 Is a Health Disparity. The event will feature Kaye Husbands Fealing, dean and Ivan Allen Jr. Chair in the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts, with an opening presentation by Manu Platt, associate professor in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering.
The conversation will take place Monday, Oct. 19, from 1 to 2 p.m. via Microsoft Teams, with a maximum capacity of 250 attendees, limited to those logged in with a Georgia Tech email address. Attendees will have the chance to ask questions, and a recording will be made available on thePetit websitefollowing the event.
In addition to the many research angles of Covid-19 including therapeutics, diagnoses, co-morbidities, public health, public policy, and healthcare systems this session will highlight the health disparities associated with Covid-19, providing an additional perspective into this public health crisis.
The discussion has been planned and organized by a committee for diversity, equity, and inclusion within the Petit Institute. The group was formed in September following a June town hall and a collective desire within the community to take action following national race-related tragedies.
The goal of our committeeis to create a safer, more inclusive, and more highly prosperous environment for our historically underrepresented minority faculty, trainees, and staff, said Ed Botchwey, committee chair and associate professor in the Coulter Department. We hope to maintain a focus on anti-racism action within our Institute.
In support of this goal, the group began hosting town halls within the Petit community on ways to think about systemic racism across disciplines.
We must confront the routines, biases, and contradictions that preserve the status quo, Botchwey said. This town hall is a fresh call to antiracist action in the bioengineering and bioscience community. Im looking forward to our conversation as we look for ways in which all of our members can answer the call.
Other committee members include:
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Petit Institute to Host Race and Racism Event on Covid-19 - Georgia Tech News Center
Comprehensive Report on Laboratory Compressors And Pumps Market 2020 | Trends, Growth Demand, Opportunities & Forecast To 2026 | Hangzhou Tailin…
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Alli Vogel is a great role model and leader in both her words and her actions, on the field and in the classroom, says Lake Region varsity field hockey coach Pauline Webb.
She was injured during last years ski season and was not going to be cleared to play field hockey her senior year. She was the first to contact me for summer season and wanted to be part of the team as much as possible. She is my go-to player when I need to get a message to the team; I can trust that the message will go out promptly, Coach Webb said. She participated in practice as much as she was cleared to, and when I found out that I needed another goalie, I asked her if shed be willing to play goalie if her doctor cleared her for that position. She had a smile on her face when I asked her and a week or so later she messaged me and told me her doctor cleared her to play goalie.
Allis desire to play her senior year, her competitive spirit, her athletic abilities, and her coachability are the reasons she is picking up the new position so quickly and the reasons Coach Webb is pleased to recognize her as the Player of the Week.
In recognition of her strong work ethic, determination, commitment and good sportsmanship, Alli is this weeks Boosters and Hancock Lumber Player of the Week. Each week, a Lake Region athlete is recognized for his/her dedication (does more than what is asked), work ethic, coachability and academic good standing. Recipients receive a specially-designed t-shirt, sponsored by Hancock Lumber.
Player of the Week: Alli Vogel
Year in School: Senior
Parents: Jen and Ryan Vogel
Sports you play: Field Hockey, alpine skiing and lacrosse
School groups/honors: National Honor Society, ASTRA, Interact and Math Team
Q. Why did you choose field hockey? I chose field hockey because my mom and grandmother played it and I wanted to try something new after playing soccer.
Q. What do you enjoy most about field hockey? I really love our team. We have a great atmosphere and were all so close with each other.
Q. How has competing in sports changed you as a person? Sports have helped me develop leadership skills, for example, I organized and led skills practices over this summer.
Q. During this period of Covid-19, what has been the most difficult adjustment? I had ACL surgery right at the beginning of this Covid-19 period and it was definitely very hard to adjust to not being able to be active or not playing a sport because Ive been a three-sport athlete since middle school.
Q. What is your most disappointing sports memory? Tearing my ACL my first run at Ski Racing States last year.
Q. How has sports prepared you for your future (be it career path or approach to life)? They have helped me gain time management skills to balance school and sports which will help me later in life.
Q. Name a coach who has made a difference in your life and in what way? Coach Whitney had a big impact on my life, from my freshman year through last year. Coach Whitney worked primarily with the defense, and she gave me the confidence that makes me the player that I am today.
Q. What are your future goals? I hope to attend college and major in Chemical Engineering and have a minor or concentration in bioengineering/biotechnology. I would also like to try to play field hockey or lacrosse in college.
See more here:
Player of the Week: Alli Vogel - The Bridgton News
Neuroscientists refer to the "gut-brain-axis," or GBA is the bidirectional communication between the gut and the brain - helping explain how nervousness gives the feeling of having "butterflies in the stomach."
A better understanding of the mechanisms affecting GBA could offer insights and lead to medications for neurological mood disorders such as anxiety and depression, and auto-immune inflammatory diseases like irritable bowel syndrome.
Unfortunately, further understanding of how the GBA actually affects and relates to these conditions remains restricted by the lack of objective and measurable criteria - reliable biomarkers - that would define the presence of a medical condition. Until recently, medical disorders have been identified in patients who reported common symptoms associated with those conditions.
(Photo: OpenStax College via Wikimedia Commons)Illustration of the Human Digestive Tract from Anatomy & Physiology, Connexions website.
A number of previous works have led scientists to believe that serotonin might have something to do with a number of GBA-related disorders. Serotonin, known as the "happy chemical," is a neurotransmitter that sends signals to the nervous system through the vagus nerve, which generally interfaces the nervous system to a number of involuntary muscles - heart, lungs, and the digestive tract.
Although serotonin is mainly in the brain, a large part of our supply of the chemical transmitter is actually found within gut linings. Additionally, the production of the chemical seems to be affected by the bacterial "microbiome," or the concentration of different bacteria in the gut.
RELATED: The Gut Microbiome and Genes Can Alter in Space
The gut and the microbes housed in it play a role in keeping homeostasis - a stable internal state despite changes in the external environment - by supporting the immune system. This microbiome helps in the immune and inflammatory response by controlling what is absorbed and what is rejected and later excreted.
For example, the inflammatory toxin lipopolysaccharide (LPS) is generated by certain cultures of gut bacteria. It can trigger an inflammatory response if too much of the toxin spill from the gut into the bloodstream. A previous study has established that inflammation, and the presence of high concentrations of LPS in the blood, might be related with a number of mental health disorders such as depression, dementia, and schizophrenia.
An interdisciplinary team from the University of Maryland (UMD), with million-dollar support from the National Science Foundation, has developed a platform that monitors and generates a model of gut microbiome serotonin activity. The UMD team, which included neuroscientists, microbiologists, engineers, and physicists, is aiming to integrate the platform into a small, ingestible medium that can detect, monitor, and possibly treat GBA-related disorders.
RELATED: Scientists Find That Gut Bacteria Can Improve Memory in Yet Another Breakthrough Study About Probiotics
Professor Reza Ghodssi, the principal investigator of the UMD team, stressed the importance of different disciplines in their work. He said: "This enables us to measure and investigate data at the interface of each junction of a simulated GBA platform-cell to cell, cell to molecule, molecule to nerve-and develop engineering methodologies to analyze and interpret it."
Their recent work builds on earlier efforts to create ingestible medical devices by the UMD MEMS Sensors and Actuators Laboratory, the Brain and Behavior Initiative, and the Fischell Department of Bioengineering.
Check out more news and information on Gut Bacteria in Science Times.
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Establishing Connections Between Gut and Brain Symptoms - Science Times
Researchers may now have gained a better understanding of how the brain causes the disorienting, disruptive sensation of being outside of ones body.
Most of the time, the mind and body operate seamlessly as a single entity. At times, however, a person may experience a disconcerting sense of disassociation, during which they feel as if they are somewhere outside of their body looking in.
According to Dr. Karl Deisseroth who is a professor of bioengineering, psychiatry, and behavioral sciences at Stanford University in California almost 3 out of 4 people who experience trauma report this phenomenon occurring either during or some time afterward.
Also, around 210% of the general population experience it at some point in their lives, he adds.
Recently, Dr. Deisseroth and colleagues conducted a study that allowed them to identify, for the first time, the brain mechanism that initiates disassociation.
They have now reported their findings in the journal Nature.
The feeling of disassociation begins with nerve cells in the brains posteromedial cortex firing synchronously at a specific rate.
Disassociation can be both troubling and disruptive, and it may become chronic. In order to develop treatments, and to understand the biology, we needed to know more, says Dr. Deisseroth.
Now, he adds, This study has identified brain circuitry that plays a role in a well-defined subjective experience.
Beyond its potential medical implications, it gets at the question, What is the self? Thats a big one in law and literature, and important even for our own introspections.
The study also describes the molecular foundation underlying the mechanism that causes disassociation.
Dr. Deisseroth describes disassociation metaphorically as the perception of being on the outside looking in at the cockpit of the plane thats your body or mind and what youre seeing you just dont consider to be yourself.
Indeed, the study is, in part, based on observations of a person who described the experience as being outside the pilots chair, looking at, but not controlling, the gauges.
The study authors were working with this individual as part of the Stanford Comprehensive Epilepsy Program. He experienced disassociation during preseizure auras, which refers to the time period directly preceding seizures.
The researchers recorded electrical signals from the individuals cerebral cortex in an attempt to identify the brain activity causing his seizures. They noticed a particular pattern of electrical activity that coincided with the aura. It was occurring in the posteromedial cortex.
The researchers observed a particular rhythm being generated by nerve signals firing synchronously. The signal pulsed at 3 Hertz (Hz), or three times per second.
They subsequently found that if they deliberately stimulated this area of the brain electrically, the individual experienced a disassociation aura but no subsequent seizure.
Previous research has suggested that mice experience disassociation as indicated by changes in their behavior.
For example, if a mouse located on an uncomfortably warm surface simply lifts its foot without licking it to soothe it as would be expected it is likely experiencing disassociation. Scientists can induce this state using the drug ketamine.
In the recent study, the researchers attempted to cause disassociation in mice by using light to optogenetically stimulate neurons in the rodent equivalent of the human posteromedial cortex.
When they applied stimulation at the same 3-Hz rate they saw in the human brain, they saw disassociative behavior without the presence of ketamine.
Additional research led to the discovery that a specific protein type called an ion channel is necessary for the generation of the 3-Hz pulse.
Recognizing the role of these proteins could lead to the development of new therapies that more effectively address disassociation and the conditions with which it is often associated, such as epilepsy, borderline personality disorder, and PTSD.
Originally posted here:
How disassociation occurs in the brain - Medical News Today