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Imec, Johns Hopkins to push nanotech for medical apps

Posted: 29 Oct 2013 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:silicon? healthcare? nanotechnology?

Johns Hopkins University has announced a collaboration with Imec to advance silicon applications in healthcare, beginning with development of a device to enable a broad range of clinical tests. The collaboration will combine the Johns Hopkins clinical and research expertise with Imec's nanoelectronics capabilities. The two organisations plan to forge strategic ties with additional collaborators in the healthcare and technology sectors, they added.

"Johns Hopkins has always prioritized innovative and transformative research opportunities," said Landon King, MD, the David Marine Professor of Medicine and executive vice dean of the school of medicine. "Our new collaboration with Imec is such an opportunity, and we very much look forward to leveraging our respective strengths across the university in biomedical and nanotechnology research to improve patient diagnosis and care throughout the world."

Imec and Johns Hopkins University hope to develop the next generation of "lab on a chip" concepts based on Imec technology. The idea is that such a disposable chip could be loaded with a sample of blood, saliva or urine and then quickly analysed using a smartphone, tablet or computer, making diagnostic testing faster and easier for applications such as disease monitoring and management, disease surveillance, rural health care and clinical trials. Compared with the current system of sending samples to a laboratory for testing, such an advance would be "the healthcare equivalent of transforming a rotary telephone into the iPhone," said Drew Pardoll, MD, PhD, the Martin Abeloff Professor of Oncology. Pardoll leads the advisory board for the Johns Hopkins-Imec collaboration, which will work to extend new applications of silicon nanotechnology into multiple areas of medicine.

"This relationship with Johns Hopkins is an important step towards creating a powerful cross-disciplinary ecosystem with consumer electronics and mobile companies, medical device manufacturers, research centres and the broader bio-pharma and semiconductor industries, to create the combined expertise required to address huge healthcare challenges that lie ahead," stated Luc Van den hove, CEO at Imec. "Only through close collaboration will we be able to develop technology solutions for more accurate, reliable and low-cost diagnostics that pave the way to better, predictive and preventive home-based personal health care."





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