NEWS 2017-11-07T06:16:55+00:00


Graphene-based skin patch measures glucose levels

A new, non-invasive skin patch made from thin-film graphene could measure glucose levels without the need for a finger-prick blood test. The device works by drawing out glucose from the fluid between cells across hair follicles, which are individually accessed via a miniaturized pixel array platform using a small electric current, in a process called electroosmotic extraction. Readings can be taken every 10 to 15 minutes over several hours and the data wirelessly transmitted to a mobile device, such as a smartphone or watch. The glucose sensor array Diabetes is a serious worldwide health problem that is set to become [...]

By | April 18th, 2018|

AFM detects heteroatoms in graphene nanoribbons

Atomic force microscopy can successfully be used to distinguish between different atoms in doped graphene nanoribbons, according to new measurements by researchers in Japan, Finland and Switzerland. The technique, which works by quantifying the differences in the van der Waals radii of the atoms, could be used as a general way to analyse technologically important functionalized 2D carbon materials. Distinguishing between B, C and N atoms Among 2D materials, graphene (which is a flat sheet of carbon just one atom thick) is one of the most attractive for a host of device applications thanks to its unique electronic and mechanical [...]

By | April 17th, 2018|

Nanosilicates stimulate growth of bone and cartilage tissue

2D nanoparticles known as nanosilicates can be used to grow bone and cartilage tissue from human mesenchymal stem cells, according to new gene sequencing experiments by researchers at Texas A&M University in the US. The finding could help in the development of next-generation bioactive materials for regenerative medicine. 2D nanosilicates Human stem cells show much promise for regenerative medicine because they can transform into various specialized cell types, including bone and cartilage cells. At the moment, such specialized cells are obtained by subjecting stem cells to specific instructive protein molecules, known as growth factors. However, these factors can produce harmful [...]

By | April 14th, 2018|

The past, present and future of 3D bioprinting

A commercial bioprinter from Organovo Bioprinting has emerged as one of the most promising techonologies for fabricating artificial tissues and organs that could revolutionize the diagnosis and treatment of many different medical conditions. In a recent review article for the journal Biofabrication, researchers at Stanford University in the US discuss the current status of bioprinting research, and assess its future potential for drug screening and toxicology studies, as well as tissue and organ transplantation. “Just as the printing press allowed massive amounts of information to be accessed at low cost for the first time in mankind’s history, so bioprinting could [...]

By | April 13th, 2018|

Photonic cellulose goes iridescent

Structural colours are not produced by chemical dyes and pigments but come from resonant interactions between visible light and engineered nanostructures. These colours do not fade over time either, the way ink does. A team of researchers in Barcelona has now developed a soft nanoimprinting lithography technique to fabricate sub-micron photonic architectures in a cellulose derivative that produce such structural colours. The photonic crystals, which are biocompatible and biodegradable, might be used in disposable, washable or edible sensors and labels for the food or medical industry, as well as in packaging, decorative paper and anti-counterfeiting technology. Cellulose photonic crystal film [...]

By | April 12th, 2018|

Colour-changing hydrogels make heart-on-a-chip

A new material made from hydrogels etched with nanocrystal patterns and rat heart cells can change colour as the heart cells expand and contract. Inspired by skin colour changes in chameleons, the “heart-on-a-chip” platform might be used to investigate the fundamental mechanisms involved in disease aetiology and organogenesis as well as to test drugs for heart disease in an alternative to animal testing. Making bioinspired self-regulated structural colour hydrogels Chameleons can rapidly change the colour of their skin between a “cryptic” (or camouflage) state and an excited state (that is mainly seen during courtship or combat). The animals do this [...]

By | April 10th, 2018|