Now, some seven months later, Bentley has undergone reconstructive surgery to move his brain back into his skull.The parents were unwilling to terminate the pregnancy, saying they wanted at least one chance to meet him before saying goodbye.Aside from the large sac containing critical parts of his brain atop his head, Bentley developed normally.He continued to grow, and cried when he was hungry.Image: Katherine C. Cohen/Boston Children s Hospital When Bentley turned four months, Sierra and Dustin took him to the Cleveland Clinic where a surgeon agreed that the infant was using his brain, but warned that it may not be possible to put it back in the cranium.After taking a look at Bentley, the surgeons realised that the parts of his brain located within the pouch could not be removed because they were responsible for cognitive functions such as motor control, problem-solving, and vision.
Now, some seven months later, Bentley has undergone reconstructive surgery to move his brain back into his skull.The parents were unwilling to terminate the pregnancy, saying they wanted at least one chance to meet him before saying goodbye.Aside from the large sac containing critical parts of his brain atop his head, Bentley developed normally.He continued to grow, and cried when he was hungry.Image: Katherine C. Cohen/Boston Children s Hospital When Bentley turned four months, Sierra and Dustin took him to the Cleveland Clinic where a surgeon agreed that the infant was using his brain, but warned that it may not be possible to put it back in the cranium.After taking a look at Bentley, the surgeons realized that the parts of his brain located within the pouch could not be removed because they were responsible for cognitive functions such as motor control, problem-solving, and vision.
In the spring of 2014, the hacker collective Anonymous took credit for hitting a number of health care and treatment facilities in the Boston area in defense of a patient there named Justina Pelletier.For background on her controversial case, which became the focus of national attention, read here or here.He has been in detention ever since.A spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz, whose office is pursuing the case, said she had no updates on the case.Boston Children s Hospital and Wayside, two of Gottesfeld s targets, didn t immediately respond to a request for comment.They said her family was part of the problem, so they limited, monitored, and censored her contact with them.
Martin Gottesfeld, 31, has been accused by the US government of orchestrating OpJustinaThe Anonymous hacking collective routinely targets corporations, famous figures or financial institutions in the name of social justice.Now, for the first time, a hacker allegedly closely involved in a 2014 campaign called OpJustina has come forward to elaborate on the reasons for a controversial series of distributed denial of service DDoS cyberattacks against a number of child treatment centres in the US."The answer is simpler than you might think: The defence of an innocent, learning disabled, 15-year-old girl," Martin Gottesfeld, 31, told the Huffington Post in a lengthy statement from federal custody, where he is facing computer misuse charges relating to the attacks.Justina was 15 years old when first admitted to the Boston Children's Hospital.At the time, in 2013, doctors ruled that a mitochondrial disease she was being treated for was largely psychiatric in nature and as a result she spent 16 months in a mental health ward as her parents fought to regain custody.
View photosMoreThis Feb. 16, 2015 photograph provided by Terri Barach shows her son-in-law Martin Gottesfeld in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Gottesfeld, who acknowledges he attacked the computer network at world-renowned Boston children s hospital in 2014, costing it hundreds of thousands of dollars, is unapologetic and now waging a hunger strike in prison as he awaits trial.Terri Barach photo via AP BOSTON AP — A man who acknowledges he attacked the computer network at world-renowned Boston Children's Hospital two years ago, costing it hundreds of thousands of dollars, is waging a hunger strike in prison as he awaits trial.Martin Gottesfeld said his 3-week-old hunger strike was meant to bring attention to the treatment of troubled youths in institutions and the "political prosecutions" by prosecutors he considers overzealous, including U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz in Massachusetts.In U.S. District Court on Wednesday, Gottesfeld pleaded not guilty to charges of conspiracy and intentionally causing damage to protected computers.After the hearing, as he got up from his chair, he fell to the floor.
Researchers from Harvard University and Boston Children s Hospital have developed an innovative robotic sleeve that fits around the heart like a glove, maintaining a steady beat while the patient recovers.As described in the latest edition of Science Translational Medicine, the robotic sleeve could open up new treatment options for people who have suffered a cardiac arrest, keeping them alive before a transplant, or to aid in cardiac rehab and recovery.The customizable device is designed to wrap around the heart, contracting and expanding in synch with its beating.Today, some of the methods used to treat heart failure include mechanical pumps called ventricular assist devices VADs , which pump blood from the ventricles each of the two main chambers of the heart into the aorta the main artery of the body .Unfortunately, these devices come into contact with the patient s blood, increasing the risk for blood clots and strokes.The new device, a collaborative effort between Harvard s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences SEAS , the Wyss Institute, and Boston Children s Hospital, overcomes this problem by avoiding direct contact with blood.
Researchers from Harvard University and Boston Children s Hospital have developed an innovative robotic sleeve that fits around the heart like a glove, maintaining a steady beat while the patient recovers.As described in the latest edition of Science Translational Medicine, the robotic sleeve could open up new treatment options for people who have suffered a cardiac arrest, keeping them alive before a transplant, or to aid in cardiac rehab and recovery.The customizable device is designed to wrap around the heart, contracting and expanding in synch with its beating.Today, some of the methods used to treat heart failure include mechanical pumps called ventricular assist devices VADs , which pump blood from the ventricles each of the two main chambers of the heart into the aorta the main artery of the body .Unfortunately, these devices come into contact with the patient s blood, increasing the risk for blood clots and strokes.The new device, a collaborative effort between Harvard s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences SEAS , the Wyss Institute, and Boston Children s Hospital, overcomes this problem by avoiding direct contact with blood.
Amazon Echo devices are fun and useful applications for consumers in the home.Developers at top hospitals and medical clinics across the US are tinkering with Amazon Alexa and other voice technologies for a variety of applications.Some are working with Alexa to deliver routine medical information to patients at home; others are using it to help surgeons complete lists of tasks.“There are some massive voice applications that will be built for health enterprises,” John Brownstein, chief innovation officer at Boston Children’s Hospital, told CNBC.Physicians at Massachusetts General Hospital are researching how text-to-speech technology can be useful in helping surgeons comply with surgical safety checklists in the operating room.Raul Uppot, a radiologist at the hospital, told CNBC that in one case a patient was listening in to the safety checklist via a voice application right before going under.
A newly-unveiled discovery, which has been four years in the making, has the potential to change the way we look at autoimmune diseases and understand how and why immune cells begin to attack different tissues in the body."Once your body's tolerance for its own tissues is lost, the chain reaction is like a runaway train," says Michael Carroll, PhD, of Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School (HMS).Their latest findings, published in Cell, reveal that rogue B cells -- immune cells that produce antibodies and program the immune system to attack certain antigens -- can trigger an "override" that launches the body into an autoimmune attack.Carroll, who is senior author on the new study, and his team think their findings can finally shed some new light on a biological phenomenon known as epitope spreading, which is when the immune system begins to go after antigens on other parts of the body that it wasn't originally instructed to destroy.Epitope spreading is a hallmark aspect of autoimmune disease, as it leads to widespread immune attack against the body's own tissues, and understanding what triggers it could open the door to new therapies designed to halt the autoimmune response in its tracks."This presents in the patient as a broadening of clinical symptoms, which can include joint pain, kidney damage and severe skin rashes.
Today, the Food and Drug Administration approved a gene therapy known as CAR T-cell therapy that genetically modifies a patient's own cells to help them combat pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), the most common childhood cancer."This represents the progression of the field of gene therapy, which has been developing over the last 30 years," says gene therapy pioneer David A. Williams, MD, who is chief scientific officer of Boston Children's Hospital and president of the Dana-Farber/Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center.The FDA's move to approve the CAR T-cell therapy, which will be marketed under the name "Kymriah" by Novartis Pharmaceuticals, opens the door to a new era of cancer medicine, and medicine more broadly.This treatment provides renewed optimism for some of the most challenging cases we face in pediatric ALL," says Lewis Silverman, MD, clinical director of the pediatric Hematologic Malignancy Center, in a statement issued by Dana-Farber/Boston Children's."We are actively preparing to offer this novel treatment at our center to patients at Dana-Farber/Boston Children's."Dana-Farber/Boston Children's has recently participated in a similar clinical trial of CAR T-cells -- led by Silverman and pediatric oncologist Steven Margossian, MD, PhD -- that evaluated the efficacy of CAR T-cell therapy (short for chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapy) in treating relapsed or treatment-resistant B-cell ALL.
(BOSTON) -- The Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering has received funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to leverage its human Organ-on-a-Chip (Organ Chip) microfluidic cell culture technology to develop clinically relevant in vitro models of influenza infection of human lung, and to identify new anti-viral therapeutics that act by modulating the host response to infection.The multi-disciplinary project led by Principal Investigator (PI) and Wyss Founding Director, Donald Ingber, M.D., Ph.D., will be one of several projects within the "Tissue Chip for Disease Modeling and Efficacy Testing" initiative funded by NIH's National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) in an effort to explore human microphysiological systems as potential facilitators of drug development in various disease areas.The development of anti-influenza drugs has been limited by the fact that animal models do not accurately reflect the infection mechanisms influenza viruses engage in humans.In the proposed studies, the Wyss Institute's team will use lung Small Airway and Alveolus Chip devices lined by living human lung cells that they previously showed to faithfully reproduce normal lung physiology as well as lung diseases that affect these regions, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma and pulmonary edema.The Lung Chips are microengineered devices the size of a computer memory stick that contain two parallel hollow channels, each less than 1 millimeter wide, separated by a porous membrane.Lung alveolar cells or airway epithelial cells are cultured on the porous membrane in one channel, and lung capillary endothelial cells are grown on the opposite side of the same membrane in the second channel to recreate the characteristic tissue-tissue interface found within these lung regions.
(BOSTON) -- Medical implants can save lives by correcting structural defects in the heart and other organs.But until now, the use of medical implants in children has been complicated by the fact that fixed-size implants cannot expand in tune with a child's natural growth.To address this unmet surgical need, a team of researchers from Boston Children's Hospital and Brigham and Women's Hospital have developed a growth-accommodating implant designed for use in a cardiac surgical procedure called a valve annuloplasty, which repairs leaking mitral and tricuspid valves in the heart.Beyond cardiac repair, the research team says the tubular, expanding implant design used in their proof-of-concept -- reported today in Nature Biomedical Engineering -- could also be adapted for a variety of other growth-accommodating implants throughout the body."Medical implants and devices are rarely designed with children in mind, and as a result, they almost never accommodate growth," says Pedro del Nido, MD, co-senior author on the study, who is chief of cardiac surgery at Boston Children's and the William E. Ladd Professor of Child Surgery at Harvard Medical School (HMS)."So, we've created an environment here where individuals with expertise and interest in medical devices can come together and collaborate towards developing materials for pediatric surgery."
(BOSTON) -- Like many other scientists, Don Ingber, M.D., Ph.D., the Founding Director of the Wyss Institute, is concerned that non-scientists have become skeptical and even fearful of his field at a time when technology can offer solutions to many of the world's greatest problems."I feel that there's a huge disconnect between science and the public because it's depicted as rote memorization in schools, when by definition, if you can memorize it, it's not science," says Ingber, who is also the Judah Folkman Professor of Vascular Biology at Harvard Medical School and the Vascular Biology Program at Boston Children's Hospital, and Professor of Bioengineering at the Harvard Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS).To see if entertainment could offer a solution to this challenge, Ingber teamed up with Charles Reilly, Ph.D., a molecular biophysicist, professional animator, and Staff Scientist at the Wyss Institute who previously worked at movie director Peter Jackson's Park Road Post film studio, to create a film that would capture viewers' imaginations by telling the story of a biological process that was accurate down to the atomic level."Applying an artistic process to science frees you from the typically reductionist approach of analyzing one particular hypothesis and teaches you a different way of observing things.The patterns and mechanics of sperm swimming have been studied and described in scientific literature, but visually showing the accurate movement of a sperm tail required tackling one of the toughest challenges facing science today: how to create a multi-scale biological model that maintains accuracy at different sizes, from cells all the way down to atoms.That would be like starting with the Empire State Building and then zooming in close enough to see every individual screw, nut and bolt that holds it together, as well as how individual water molecules flow inside its pipes, while maintaining crystal-clear resolution - not an easy task.
Three-dimensional modeling and CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology are giving scientists a new view into Sturge-Weber syndrome, a rare congenital disorder that causes small blood vessels, called capillaries, to be malformed.These capillary malformations can cause port wine birthmarks on the face and neck, and in some cases, abnormal vasculature in the brain that can spark seizures.Last year, a Boston Children's Hospital research team -- led by Joyce Bischoff, PhD, of the Vascular Biology Program -- discovered that the genetic mutation responsible for Sturge-Weber syndrome dwells in endothelial cells lining the affected capillaries in the brain.The team had previously found the same mutation present in the endothelial cells of skin capillaries of patients' port wine birthmarks.To explore this emerging hypothesis, Bischoff's team is seeking lifelike ways of mimicking these hallmark capillary malformations in the laboratory.Their goal is to use microfluidic chip technology to grow 3D, physiologically-relevant vascular networks containing the syndrome's genetic mutation, called GNAQ R183Q.
The social media giant is launching a messaging app for children to chat with their parents and with friends approved by their parents.The free app is aimed at kids under-13, who can't yet have their own accounts under Facebook's rules, though they often do.Messenger Kids comes with a slew of controls for parents.The service won't let children add their own friends or delete messages — only parents can do that.Face filters and playful masks can be distracting for adults, Lavallee said, but for kids who are just learning how to form relationships and stay in touch with parents digitally, they are ways to express themselves.Lavallee, who is content strategist at the Centre on Media and Child Health at Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard University, called Messenger Kids a "useful tool" that "makes parents the gatekeepers."
A new study led by Boston Children's Hospital and the University of Montreal raises a note of caution, finding that person-to-person genetic differences may undercut the efficacy of the gene editing process or, in more rare cases, cause a potentially dangerous "off target" effect."Humans vary in their DNA sequences, and what is taken as the 'normal' DNA sequence for reference cannot account for all these differences," says Stuart Orkin, MD, of Dana-Farber Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center and co-corresponding author on the study with Matthew Canver, an MD-PhD student at Harvard Medical School."We recommend that common variation be taken into account in designing targeting systems for therapeutic editing, to maximize efficacy and minimize potential safety concerns."Based on a list of about 30 disease-related DNA targets that researchers are interested in altering through gene editing, the researchers made a second list of nearly 3,000 guide RNAs (gRNAs).These are bits of genetic code that have been developed to direct CRISPR-Cas9 enzymes to the right editing location on or adjacent to the target, like the address on an envelope."If there are genetic differences at the site that CRISPR reagents are targeting for therapy, you are at risk for decreased efficacy or treatment failure," explains Canver, who conceived and led the study in Orkin's Boston Children's Hospital lab.
The pig looks like any other pig, only it's been wearing a backpack for a week—in the name of science.Once inside, the cable attaches to a very special robot clamped onto the pig's esophagus, the pathway to the stomach.What researchers detail today in the journal Science Robotics is how their robot could not only help treat this disorder, but also short bowel syndrome, in which a child loses large portions of the intestines to infection.Implantable robots, then, may help extend organs in the human body—though weirdly not by stretching, like you might assume is going on here.“They tie these onto what looks like buttons on the kid's back,” says Boston Children's Hospital researcher Pierre Dupont, co-author of the paper.Problem is, this lengthening can take up to a month, and the kid has to be sedated the whole time.
An implantable robot that helps stretch body tissue has been developed by a team of physicians and engineers at the Boston Children’s Hospital.By slowly tugging on the tissue in question, the miniature robot is designed to lengthen tubular organs that exhibit stunted growth, offering a solution for rare birth defects affecting the esophagus and bowel, which can be debilitating to children and challenging to address surgically.In the current standard of care for long-gap esophageal atresia, a rare defect in which part of the esophagus is missing, a child must be put into an induced coma and kept in intensive care for one to four weeks as the esophagus is manually lengthened.In the robotic design, two rings are attached to the esophagus, which has been sewn together.A motor slowly tugs the rings apart, lengthening the esophageal tissue in the process.One of the main advantages of the new technique is that a child wouldn’t have to be sedated during the procedure.
Engineers from the University of Sheffield's Engineering Faculty and Boston's Children Hospital, Harvard Medical School have created a robot that can be used to help treat babies with a rare birth defect that affects an infant's oesophagusThe robot stimulates cells by gently pulling on tissue using sensorsThe robot is inspired by the Foker procedure but is less invasive and more accurate and will enable babies to move more freely during this delicate procedureResearchers at the University of Sheffield and Boston's Children Hospital, Harvard Medical School have created a robot that can be implanted into the body to aid the treatment of oesophageal atresia, a rare birth defect that affects a baby's oesophagus.Dr Dana Damian from the Department of Automatic Control and Systems Engineering at the University of Sheffield and her team from Boston Children's Hospital have created the revolutionary prototype robotic implant which encourages tissue growth in babies.The robot's function is inspired by the Foker technique of correcting the oesophageal atresia which involves manually pulling the tissue slowly using sutures over a period of time.
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., January 23, 2018 - Scholar Rock, a biotechnology company focused on discovering and developing drugs that selectively target growth factors in the disease microenvironment, today announced the publication of "Tolloid cleavage activates latent GDF8 by priming the pro?complex for dissociation" in the EMBO Journal in collaboration with the laboratories of Prof. Timothy Springer (Dept.of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School, and Boston Children's Hospital) and Prof. John R. Engen (Dept.Initially produced by muscle in a latent inactive form, myostatin can be activated under certain conditions by sequential enzymatic steps.Insight into the activation mechanism of myostatin and other related proteins is central to the drug discovery platform established at Scholar Rock for the development of novel therapies for the treatment of many severe diseases."Deploying deep structural understanding of growth factors and their activation is opening a profound new way to intervene in human disease," said Alan J. Buckler, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer of Scholar Rock."SRK-015, our clinical candidate for the treatment of muscle atrophy and wasting disorders, exemplifies the strong potential of targeting specific structural states of myostatin with the objective of providing superior therapeutic outcomes."
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