MASSDEVICE ON CALL — Austrian researchers reported have developed "mini-brains," stem-cell-based versions of the embryonic human brain, that can help model hard-to-study diseases.
The tiny brains, or "cerebral organoids," include various brain regions such as the cerebral cortex and they can be programmed to model diseases based on actual patients.
The Austrian team demonstrated their process by developing a model brain based on a patients with microcephaly. The brain-modeling method may have important implications for research and treatment development for neurological disease that have proved hard to manage through mice alone, such as Alzheimer’s disease, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Better sleep through electricity
Patients suffering from post-polio syndrome, a condition that can leave patients with deteriorating strength and endurance, may get some relief from transcranial direct current stimulation. Patients that received tDCS for a period of 15 days experienced improved sleep and reduced fatigue symptoms, researchers reported.
Shark-bite victim stops by Smith & Nephew
Shark-bite victim Erik Norrie stopped by Smith & Nephew’s (FTSE:SN, NYSE:SNN) wound management business this month, showing off the large wound on his leg that’s healing well thanks to a Smith & Nephew’s negative pressure wound therapy products.
Medtronic’s new deep brain stimulation is progress in care as well as research
Medtronic’s (NYSE:MDT) Activa PC+S deep brain stimulation system, which was implanted in its 1st German patient earlier this month, provides new opportunities for patients as well as brain researchers, thanks to its monitoring as well as therapy-delivery features.
American Heart Assn. backs Obamacare’s individual mandate
The American Heart Assn. issued a statement backing the individual insurance mandate, saying that personal responsibility aspect of healthcare reform is "crucial to realizing the important patient protections, cost concerns and peace of mind accorded to heart and stroke patients under the Affordable Care Act."