medical research

Fibre optics: from cables to colon health

A new fibre optic medical tool is revolutionising our understanding of serious but socially embarrassing digestive illnesses, such as constipation, diarrhoea and irritable bowel syndrome. Thanks to this device, medical scientists can see for the first time the coordinated, fine and complex muscular activity of the human digestive system in action. CSIRO optical physicist Dr [...]

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Bionic eye researchers take a shine to diamond

Electrodes made of diamond are helping Melbourne researchers build a better bionic eye.

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Intelligent drugs

Dr Georgina Such imagines a miniscule capsule designed like a set of Russian babushka dolls.

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New tool for better breast cancer detection

Queensland scientists are helping radiologists to spot the more subtle signs of breast cancer, using computer tools and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Currently MRI allows radiologists to detect lumps or other growths by creating a 3D anatomical image of the breast. Prof Stuart Crozier and his team at the University of Queensland have developed a [...]

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Starving cancer and other stories

Prostate cancers are made up of hungry, growing cells. Now we’ve discovered how to cut off their food supply thanks to a study published in Cancer Research and supported by Movember. More below. Also Australian science discoveries you may have missed…

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Pain relief from the sea

For the one in five Australians of working age suffering from serious chronic pain, the options for relief are strictly limited. There’s morphine and . . . well, there’s morphine. But now one of the most powerful toxins in the natural world—the venom of marine cone snails—offers hope of a future free of pain and [...]

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Milk could soothe the savage gum

Melbourne dental health researchers have discovered a painless, low-cost treatment which may prevent gum disease. And the key ingredients—protein fragments known as peptides—come from cows’ milk.

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Curing cancer with radiation – safely

Prostate and other soft-tissue cancers are often treated with radioactive sources implanted or inserted into the body. But monitoring the dose is problematic.

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How a molecular assassin operates

The secrets of a molecular assassin could lead to more effective treatments for cancer and viral diseases, better therapy for autoimmune conditions, and a deeper understanding of the body’s defences enabling the development of more tightly focused immunosuppressive drugs.

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Saving our skins

Physicist Dr Amanda Barnard has been using supercomputers to find the balance between sun protection and potential toxicity in a new generation of sunscreens which employ nanoparticles. The metal oxide nanoparticles which block solar radiation are so small they cannot be seen, so the sunscreen appears transparent. But if the particles are too small, they [...]

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