Tech Briefs

Briefs : Materials
Topical Compositions and Glove for Protection and Shielding Against Radiation Exposure

Over the past several decades, there has been a proliferation of medical diagnostic and treatment devices that involve the use of X-rays, beta rays, gamma rays, and radioactive isotopes. In addition, there has been recent concern regarding possible radiation...

Briefs : Medical
Digital Microfluidics Sample Analyzer

Three innovations address the needs of the medical world with regard to microfluidic manipulation and testing of physiological samples in ways that can benefit point-of-care needs for patients such as premature infants, for which drawing of blood for continuous tests can be life-threatening in their own...

Briefs : Medical
Process to Selectively Distinguish Viable From Non-Viable Bacterial Cells

The combination of ethidium monoazide (EMA) and post-fragmentation, randomly primed DNA amplification technologies will enhance the analytical capability to discern viable from non-viable bacterial cells in spacecraft-related samples. Intercalating agents have been widely...

Briefs : Medical
Orthotic Dynamically Adjusts to Changes in Foot Structure and Movement

Kinesthotic© orthotics are made to adapt to the foot by replicating, within footwear, an explicit quality of beach-sand surface dynamics on whatever surface the footwear is used. The resulting support complies with the biomechanically sound and functional supportive...

Briefs : Medical
Reusable Personal Radiation Dosimeter for Ultraviolet or Radioactive Radiation

Radiation dosimeters are important for people working with radioactive isotopes, as in analytical research laboratories, in nuclear medical applications, in medical X-ray imaging, in nuclear power-stations, or in non-destructive testing of materials by ionizing...

Briefs : Medical
High-Altitude Hydration System

Three methods are being developed for keeping water from freezing during high-altitude climbs so that mountaineers can remain hydrated. Three strategies have been developed. At the time of this reporting two needed to be tested in the field and one was conceptual.

Briefs : Medical
Eye, Ear, and Skin Scope

A handheld, digitized ophthalmo scope, otoscope, or dermoscope takes digital images and video, and transmits the images to patients’ electronic medical records and/or to physicians for remote diagnosis. The device can be used for retinal (ophthalmoscopy), ear (otoscopy), or skin (dermatoscopy) imaging.

Briefs : Medical
Enhancing Tumor Drug Delivery by Laser-Activated Vascular Barrier Disruption

An obstacle to successful cancer drug therapy is the existence of drug delivery barriers, which result in insufficient and heterogeneous drug delivery to the tumor tissue. This drug delivery problem not only limits the clinical application of existing chemotherapeutics,...

Briefs : Medical
Fast, Quantitative Diagnostic Reader for Multiple Medical Tests

While most physicians have easy access to lab tests, those tests can be slow and expensive. Consumer versions of tests are inaccurate and have limited scope, and often involve sending a sample to a lab. Physicians, emergency rooms, EMTs, patients, visiting nurses, and caregivers may...

Briefs : Medical
Miniature Bioreactor System for Long-Term Cell Culture

A prototype miniature bioreactor system is designed to serve as a laboratory benchtop cell-culturing system that minimizes the need for relatively expensive equipment and reagents and can be operated under computer control, thereby reducing the time and effort required of human investigators...

Briefs : Medical
Fabrication and Modification of Nanoporous Silicon Particles

Silicon-based nanoporous particles as biodegradable drug carriers are advantageous in permeation, controlled release, and targeting. The use of biodegradable nanoporous silicon and silicon dioxide, with proper surface treatments, allows sustained drug release within the target site...

Briefs : Medical
Electrochemical Detection of Multiple Bioprocess Analytes

An apparatus that includes highly miniaturized thin-film electrochemical sensor array has been demonstrated as a prototype of instruments for simultaneous detection of multiple substances of interest (analytes) and measurement of acidity or alkalinity in bioprocess streams. Measurements...

Briefs : Medical
Zinc-Doped Tricalcium Phosphate Ceramic for Surgical Implants

A ceramic body consisting of the phases of tricalcium phosphate and/or hydroxyapatite provides biocompatibility with hard tissues. When such a ceramic body is implanted in a bone, direct connection is formed between the bone and the ceramic body without intervention of any fibrous...

Briefs : Medical
Micro-Electrode Visual Inspection System Utilizing Image Processing Tools

A system was devised to aid in the inspection of micro-electrode assemblies utilized in clinical lab instruments to conduct impedance measurements on living cells in a 384 bottomless well casing with the electrode layer bonded to the housing, creating the closed-cell,...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Power-Assist Control Interface for Wheelchairs

A computer-controlled, programmable control interface allows safe, intuitive manual control for motorized wheelchairs that operate in variable terrain. The key feature of this technology is its proprietary computer program that enables an operator to manage a load as if it were light and on a smooth...

Briefs : Medical
Neuroprosthetics and Solutions for Restoring Sensorimotor Functions

Advances in body armor and life-saving technology have increased survival rates of severely injured military personnel. Unfortunately, the survivors of improvised explosive devices are often left with amputations and/or spinal cord injuries. The increase in amputations and...

Briefs : Medical
Implantable Microsystems for Anatomical Rewiring of Brain Circuitry

It has been demonstrated that after a stroke-like lesion in the cerebral cortex of non-human primates, the remaining intact tissue undergoes extensive neuro-physiological and neuroanatomical remodeling. The ability of cortical areas remote from the infarct to form new...

Briefs : Motion Control
Controlling Devices Using the Ear as an Output Source

Current methods of device control include joysticks, which involve using one or both hands, external microphones that are cumbersome and pick up ambient noise, and external arrays that are also cumbersome and can restrict a user’s movement. Additionally, the external microphone and array...

Briefs : Medical
Wireless Patient Monitoring Based on Personal Area Networks

The Wireless Patient Monitoring System deploys the Zigbee standard to create a Personal Area Network (a wireless network with a coverage area of around 10 m) that is capable of integrating into the same wireless network used by monitoring systems such as an electrocardiogram, pulse...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Particle Distribution on Webs or Cloths

This technology provides a methodology and products that are formed from fibrous substrates or film-like surfaces by uniform impregnation with a particulate that is subsequently firmly attached. The extremely uniform distribution of the particulate is accomplished by 1) electrically charging a fibrous...

Briefs : Medical
Apparatus for Cold, Pressurized Biogeochemical Experiments

A laboratory apparatus has been devised as a means of studying plausible biogeochemical reactions under high-pressure, low-temperature aqueous, anaerobic conditions like those conjectured to prevail in a liquid water ocean on Europa (the fourth largest moon of the planet Jupiter). The...

Briefs : Medical
Hollow Radiopaque Bioactive Microspheres Carry Drugs in Embolization Procedures

The number of applications of synthetic biomaterials continues to expand. However, the imaging of injected biomaterials is important to control the treatment procedure in real time, to avoid complications, and to assess therapeutic success. Embolization is the...

Briefs : Medical
Isolation of Resistance-Bearing Microorganisms

Strategies were explored for inactivating resistance-bearing microorganisms, focusing on a new species (Bacillus horneckii sp. nov.) discovered on the surfaces of the Kennedy Space Center cleanroom facility in which the Phoenix lander was assembled. Two strains that belong to this novel species were...

Briefs : Imaging
Growing B Lymphocytes in a Three-Dimensional Culture System

A three-dimensional (3D) culture system for growing long-lived B lymphocytes has been invented. The capabilities afforded by the system can be expected to expand the range of options for immunological research and related activities, including testing of immunogenicity of vaccine...

Briefs : Materials
Liquid Cooling/Warming Garment

The NASA liquid cooling/ventilating garment (LCVG) currently in use was developed over 40 years ago. With the commencement of a greater number of extra-vehicular activity (EVA) procedures with the construction of the International Space Station, problems of astronaut comfort, as well as the reduction of the...

Briefs : Medical
Tissuelike 3D Assemblies of Human Broncho-Epithelial Cells

Three-dimensional (3D) tissuelike assemblies (TLAs) of human bronchoepithelial (HBE) cells have been developed for use in in vitro research on infection of humans by respiratory viruses. The 2D monolayer HBE cell cultures heretofore used in such research lack the complex cell structures...

Briefs : Medical
Oscillating Cell Culture Bioreactor

To better exploit the principles of gas transport and mass transport during the processes of cell seeding of 3D scaffolds and in vitro culture of 3D tissue engineered constructs, the oscillatory cell culture bioreactor provides a flow of cell suspensions and culture media directly through a porous 3D scaffold...

Briefs : Medical
Dual Optics/Ultrasound Imaging and Contrast Media for the Detection and Characterization of Prostate Cancer

Detection of prostate cancer has frequently been plagued with inadequate sensitivity and specificity. Hypoxia is the hallmark of malignancy because aggressive cancers outgrow their blood supply. Optical imaging is emerging as a physiologic...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Photochemical Tissue Bonding for Military Medical Applications

Joining severed vessels is a recurring problem in trauma and surgery. The basic technology of joining vessels using sutures has been available for centuries, but remains a slow and tedious process. A complete system for micro-anastomosis of vessels was developed that involves a laser...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Magnetic Nanoparticles and Devices for Biomedical Uses

A program comprising several collaborative research efforts has been dedicated to advancing the art of utilization of magnetic nanoparticles for biomedical purposes. The research has been performed by three teams, each focusing on different aspects of the art:

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