The Rise Of The Cyborg

Researchers from UCLA and the University of Connecticut have designed a new biofriendly energy storage system called a biological supercapacitor, which operates using charged particles, or ions, from fluids in the human body. The device is harmless to the body’s biological systems, and it could lead to longer-lasting cardiac pacemakers and other implantable medical devices like artificial heart.

The UCLA team was led by Richard Kaner, a distinguished professor of chemistry and biochemistry, and of materials science and engineering, and the Connecticut researchers were led by James Rusling, a professor of chemistry and cell biology. A paper about their design was published this week in the journal Advanced Energy Materials.

Pacemakers — which help regulate abnormal heart rhythms — and other implantable devices have saved countless lives. But they’re powered by traditional batteries that eventually run out of power and must be replaced, meaning another painful surgery and the accompanying risk of infection. In addition, batteries contain toxic materials that could endanger the patient if they leak.

The researchers propose storing energy in those devices without a battery. The supercapacitor they invented charges using electrolytes from biological fluids like blood serum and urine, and it would work with another device called an energy harvester, which converts heat and motion from the human body into electricity — in much the same way that self-winding watches are powered by the wearer’s body movements. That electricity is then captured by the supercapacitor.

Combining energy harvesters with supercapacitors can provide endless power for lifelong implantable devices that may never need to be replaced,” said Maher El-Kady, a UCLA postdoctoral researcher and a co-author of the study.

Source: http://newsroom.ucla.edu/

Artificial Heart: Patient Came Back Home For A New Life

Five months after his surgery in Nantes, the second French patient who received CARMAT artificial heart is in good health, after he came back home.

For the first time, we are not talking only of survival but of a “new life“, says the Dr Carpentier in charge of the recovery. The second patient who received an artificial heart on 5 August in Nantes, returned to his family, free of his movements. He just needs to carry a bag of three pounds, similar to a laptop and has to charge its batteries every 4 to 5 hours.
artificial heart CARMAT
This is good news even to the father of the French artificial heart – Professor Carpentier – who speaks of “miracle” in front of a man walking better than he does. In late October, Prof. Carpentier indicated that his patient could already exercise on a bike. Return to a “normal” life, autonomous, that is the final purpose and this is why the artifical heart has been designed.
Source: http://www.carmatsa.com/

Second Artificial Heart Implant

French media report that doctors have implanted an artificial heart made by the company CARMAT for a second time. The shares of the company Carmat, in which trading was initially halted, were up 14 percent this morning after opening up nearly 19 percent.

heart
Apparently, everything went well but we know nothing about that patient,” French daily Liberation reported on Friday about the surgery, adding that it had not been able to get an official confirmation from the company itself. The news was also reported by French radio station France Inter. Nobody was immediately available for comment at Carmat.

Carmat‘s device is designed to replace the real heart for as long as five years, mimicking nature‘s work using biological materials and sensors. It aims to extend life for thousands of patients who die each year while awaiting a donor.

In July, Carmat shares rose sharply after the company said it could resume clinical tests of its artificial heart.

Patient enrollment had been put on hold in March after the first person to be implanted with the device, a 76-year-old man, died two-and-a-half months after his operation.

Before he was fitted with the device, the man was suffering from terminal heart failure and was said to have only a few weeks, or even days, to live.
Developed by a team of engineers from Airbus company, the Carmat devices – using the last strong>nanotechnologies expected to cost 150,000 euros ($193,600) eachmimic heart muscle contractions with two micro pumps, one for each ventricle or heart chamber. The device moves blood to the lungs and into the body. The new design uses cutting-edge biopolymer materials that promise to reduce the formation of dangerous blood clots—a persistent problem with early artificial hearts—and may even spare patients from needing to use nettlesome anticoagulant drugs. Around 5.7 million people in the U.S. have heart failure at any given time, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In these patients, the heart’s pumping abilities have grown so weak that it cannot deliver enough oxygen and nutrients to the body.
source: http://www.reuters.com/

Artificial Hearts For Humans In 2015

French company Carmat has won approval to proceed with the first human implantations of its artificial heart in four countries, sending its shares up 25 percent. The approval were given by the four international cardiac surgery centers in Belgium, Poland, Saudi Arabia and Slovenia, where the tests will be carried out, but not in France, where Carmat’s artificial heart is still to gain approval from the drug safety agency, ANSM. Among Carmat’s competitors are privately-held SynCardia Systems and Abiomed Inc., both of the United States.
CARMAT artificial heart inventor
“The patient selection process and the training of the clinical teams are ongoing in these four countries (…) Implantations could start shortly following the completion of the training,” Carmat said in a press release.

Developed by a team of engineers from Airbus parent company EADS, the Carmat devices – expected to cost 150,000 euros ($193,600) each – mimic heart muscle contractions with two micro pumps, one for each ventricle or heart chamber. The device moves blood to the lungs and into the body. The new design uses cutting-edge biopolymer materials that promise to reduce the formation of dangerous blood clots—a persistent problem with early artificial hearts—and may even spare patients from needing to use nettlesome anticoagulant drugs. Around 5.7 million people in the U.S. have heart failure at any given time, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In these patients, the heart’s pumping abilities have grown so weak that it cannot deliver enough oxygen and nutrients to the body.
Source: http://www.reuters.com/

How To Develop Stronger Artificial Hearts

Ali Khademhosseini,, a researcher from the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, a division of Harvard Medical School, has created ultra-thin cardiac patches. Now medicine is a step closer to durable, high-functioning artificial tissues that could be used to repair damaged hearts and other organs.

artificial-heart
The cardiac tissue patches utilize a hydrogel scaffolding reinforced by nanomaterials called carbon nanotubes. To create the patches, the researchers seeded neonatal rat heart muscle tissue onto carbon nanotube-infused hydrogels.
Source: http://researchfaculty.brighamandwomens.org/
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http://phys.org/