Developing Antibody Defenses
Long before the coronavirus-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic began, four research groups—two at universities and two at biotechnology companies—were preparing for it by tackling a seemingly outlandish challenge proffered by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) of the U.S. Department of Defense: find a stopgap defense against emerging pathogens, so people would have protection until a longer-term solution, notably a vaccine, became available... Read more

COVID-19 Is Straining Mental Health—Could Technology Be the Answer?
One of the most pernicious side effects of the COVID-19 pandemic is a steep rise in stress and mental health problems. According to a poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation, nearly half of American adults say that worry and stress about the pandemic is hurting their mental health. There are plenty of factors feeding into this phenomenon... Read more
AI-Driven COVID-19 Tools to Interpret, Quantify Lung Images
Qualitative interpretation is a good thing when it comes to reading lung images in the fight against coronavirus 2019 disease (COVID-19), but quantitative analysis makes radiology reporting much more comprehensive. To that end, several research groups have begun looking to artificial intelligence (AI) as a tool for reading and analyzing X-rays and computed tomography (CT) scans, and helping to diagnose and monitor COVID-19... Read more
Tracking COVID-19: There’s an App for That
In march 2020, before COVID-19 laid claim to the United States, Vice President Mike Pence briefed the press about the coronavirus outbreak, which at the time was a threat to passengers aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship moored off the coast of California [1]. At the time, cases had spiked in Iran, Italy, and Spain, but the disease was still an abstraction to most Americans... Read more
Healing Gets a Helping Hand
The human body is miraculous in its capacity to heal but it can always use a little help. Wound care traditionally consists of little more than a protective barrier, possibly with an antibacterial agent, to cover the damage while the body works its magic. Now, a new technology has opened up a more active approach to encouraging healing... Read more
New, At-Home Antibody Test For Detecting, Tracking COVID-19
The test will be part of a large U.S. study to understand prevalence, post-infection immunity and potential lingering health impacts. An at-home test for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) could be released commercially as early as August, according to Scanwell Health of... Read more
Health and Safety of 5G: Addressing Misinformation
As wireless network providers begin to roll out 5G networks, in similar fashion to the introduction of other new technologies—from the microwave oven to smart meters—public concern regarding the safety of the technology has emerged, particularly due to the use... Read more
COVID-19 Testing: What New Mexico Did Right
Unlike many other states across America that struggled to get enough diagnostic tests for coronavirus 2019 disease (COVID-19) this past spring, New Mexico was able to not only meet the demand for testing symptomatic patients, but was able to begin... Read more
Unmasked Behavior
Faced with the evidence, scientists ponder why everyone doesn’t wear a mask After initial assertions that the wearing of face masks was an unnecessary public health tool in the prevention of the spread of COVID-19, the advice coming out of the... Read more
From Face-to-Face to FaceTime
In a Jetsons episode from 60 years ago, Elroy, the youngest Jetson, tries to get out of taking a space calculus test at school by telling his mom he’s sick. “I think I have Venus Virus,” he says. His mom doubts him, but summons a doctor anyway... Read more

EMBS Journal Updates

IEEE Open Journal of

Engineering in Medicine and Biology

2020
VOLUME 1
IOJEA7
1
Critical COVID-19 Research from our Fast-Track
SARS-CoV-2 Detection from Voice
Abstract: Automated voice-based detection of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) could facilitate the screening for COVID19. A dataset of cellular phone recordings from 88 subjects was recently collected. The dataset included vocal utterances, speech and coughs that were self-recorded... Read more
Magnetic Microdevices for MRI Measurement of SARS-CoV-2 Concentration
Goal: To develop a micron-scale device that can operate as an MRI-based reporter for the presence of SARS-CoV-2 virus. Methods: Iron rod microdevices were constructed via template-guided synthesis and suspended in phosphate buffered saline (PBS). Heat-inactivated SARS-CoV-2 viruses were added... Read more

Pulse Ideas

State of the Art July/August 2020
Collateral Learning
Students take engineering courses to learn techniques for solving problems. Thus, most engineering courses taken by undergraduate students are highly technical in nature. But, there are many additional techniques and skills that can be learned along the way... Read more
Retrospectroscope July/August 2020
Vaccines and Homeopath
There are some similarities between the concepts of vaccination and that giving support to homeopathy. The objective of the present article explores the historical background of both trying to better understand such similarities, if any at all... Read more
Book Reviews July/August 2020
Organ-on-a-Chip Engineered Microenvironments for Safety and Efficacy Testing
The need to improve testing platforms for current and new pharmaceuticals has helped generate studies involving “organs-on-a-chip” technologies in recent years. This text, aimed at a readership including biomedical engineers, entrepreneurs, design engineers, new drug investigators, etc., attempts to survey the current state of the art in this area of endeavor... Read more
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