To help detect infectious diseases such as anthrax, HIV, and smallpox, researchers from Northwestern University developed a technique for creating DNA detection probes to "fingerprint" these biological agents. Attached to tiny gold particles are molecules that provide a unique signal (the "fingerprint") when a light is shined on them and a single strand of DNA designed to recognize and bind a target of interest. If a disease target is present in the sample being tested, strands of DNA bind to the appropriate spot on the chip. Corresponding nanoparticle probes latch onto any matches, which are then coated with silver. A laser scans the chip, and signals for the probes are recorded. A unique "fingerprint" can be designed for each biological agent. For more information, contact Chad Mirkin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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