Indian researcher develops smartphone-based device for male infertility screening

An Indian and a team of researchers from Harvard Medical School, Boston have developed a smartphone-based semen analyser that will go a long way in identifying the cause of infertility in men — low sperm concentration and motility —with nearly 98% accuracy. The portable, easy to use, automated device can be used by untrained individuals, … Continue reading Indian researcher develops smartphone-based device for male infertility screening

Lab-grown vocal cord tissue

For the first time, scientists have successfully grown vocal cord tissue in the lab that can produce sound when transplanted into animals. But most importantly, the bioengineered structure was not rejected for as long as three months when transplanted into mice with human immune system. The bioengineered vocal cord tissue was transplanted onto one side … Continue reading Lab-grown vocal cord tissue

Repurposed antibiotic shows promise

By tweaking the antibiotic spectinomycin, researchers have successfully boosted its effectiveness against six drug-resistant bacteria that cause common respiratory and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). The antibiotic spectinomycin was originally developed to treat gonorrhoea. The tweaked drug, tested in vivo and on mice, produced excellent results. Once clinical testing is completed, the repurposed antibiotic can prove … Continue reading Repurposed antibiotic shows promise

A smartphone dongle to diagnose HIV, syphilis

A palm-sized dongle connected to a smartphone will soon be able to diagnose HIV and syphilis with good accuracy. The device, which was recently field-tested on 96 patients in Rwanda, had high sensitivity and specificity for both HIV and syphilis. The results are published today (February 5) in the journal Science Translational Medicine. Sensitivity and … Continue reading A smartphone dongle to diagnose HIV, syphilis

Using a diabetes drug to treat TB shows promise

Thanks to metformin, a drug that is commonly prescribed for type 2 diabetes patients, treating TB — both the drug-sensitive and drug-resistant types — may become far more effective if clinical trials in humans produce the same results as laboratory and animal studies. According to a study published today (November 20) in the journal Science … Continue reading Using a diabetes drug to treat TB shows promise

Genetic basis of cholera resistance found

Believe it or not, there is a hereditary component that determines whether a person is susceptibility to cholera or not. At least in the case of those of Bengali ethnicity in Dhaka, Bangladesh, there appears sufficient proof to say so. According to a paper published today (July 4, 2013) in Science Translational Medicine , this … Continue reading Genetic basis of cholera resistance found

New way to develop influenza A vaccine

Precious time lost in developing an effective vaccine against influenza A viruses that jump from animals to humans and spread across the world causing a pandemic is quite close to becoming history. According to a study published today (May 30) in the Science Translational Medicine journal, an effective vaccine would be available for use against … Continue reading New way to develop influenza A vaccine

A trial drug raises hope to eradicate malaria

Published in The Hindu on March 21, 2013 A candidate drug (ELQ-300) was found capable of treating and preventing malaria infection, and even blocking transmission during a trial on mice. While the currently available drugs target the parasite at the blood stage of infection, the candidate drug was able to target both the liver and … Continue reading A trial drug raises hope to eradicate malaria

A drug to treat leukaemia shows promise in mice

Published in The Hindu on March 14, 2013   A new monoclonal antibody that can treat leukaemia and a few solid tumours, like ovarian cancer, is a step closer. Leukaemia is largely incurable in adults.  This is because the cancer-associated proteins — the target of monoclonal antibodies — are safely secured inside cells, and are beyond … Continue reading A drug to treat leukaemia shows promise in mice

Preventing heart failure post attack in pigs

Published in The Hindu on February 21, 2013 A study published today (February 21) in Science Translational Medicine journal holds the promise that one day people who have suffered a heart attack (myocardial infarction) may not progress to a stage where the heart’s ability to pump blood to meet the body’s requirement gets compromised (heart … Continue reading Preventing heart failure post attack in pigs