This week in health, science and tech: the ‘factory-in-a-box’ that found fame, a vast reserve of Helium that was found in Tanzania, SPECT scanners catching up with the 21st Century and the world’s largest ever population study that was launched to find real, effective treatments for dementia. Get up to speed this weekend with this roundup.
Working in the biopharmaceuticals industry, Johan Rosenquist saw a problem. Biopharmaceuticals, also called biologics, are the world’s fastest-growing class of medicines, helping to fight against some of the world’s toughest diseases. They are protein-based drugs that are isolated from natural sources—mostly microorganisms like bacteria and mammalian cells.
Last week researchers discovered large quantities of helium in the Tanzanian East African Rift Valley. Helium is found in much more than just balloons and the periodic table of elements. Here’s 10 stats you may or may not have known about this chemical element and why this discovery matters for healthcare.
When gamma camera technology was first demonstrated in 1957, the combination of whole-organ imaging and three-dimensional scanning was a technological marvel of the decade, up there with color TV. Of course, TV has changed since then… but SPECT/CT has remained largely in the age of cathode -ray tube sets.
Rambam Hospital in Haifa, Israel recently installed the first in a new generation of SPECT/CT scanners that is dramatically changing the way scans could be carried out in future and that can reduce injected dose or scan time by up to 50%*. Another was unveiled at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, U.S., earlier this year.
Established by the Medical Research Council in June 2014, the £53M Dementias Platform UK (DPUK) is creating the world’s largest population study, bringing together two million participants, from over 30 existing study groups within the country. The project aims to transform its scientists’ pioneering research into real, effective treatments for patients.
The same can be said of Olympic doctors. As well as being the best in their field, they work just as tirelessly and relentlessly as the athletes themselves to deliver the best care they possibly can. After all, national glory is at stake. Few clinicians get the privilege to work with patients who are as passionate about succeeding as them.
Fewer doctors can claim to have been athletes themselves – and even fewer have won Gold for their country.