Coronavirus

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Coping with Covid-19

How to work in the lab (while staying at home)

Inspired by remotely controlled surgical robots, professor and Vici laureate Jaime Gómez Rivas turned the corona crisis into an opportunity. He started to transform his lab into a remotely controlled experimental facility. And with success: the first paper based on entirely remote measurements is about to be published. ‘As soon as the lockdown began in March, I sat down and had a chat with my…

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AI does not discriminate

Removing bias from mammography screening with deep learning

AI can help tackle inequities and bias in healthcare but it also brings partiality issues of its own, experts explained in a Hot Topic session entitled "Artificial Intelligence and Implications for Health Equity: Will AI Improve Equity or Increase Disparities?" at RSNA. Two leading researchers showcased how deep learning may help bring back all the patients into screening mammography…

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Measuring aerosol travel while talking and singing

Imaging exhaled breath to provide new insights into Covid-19 transmission

A new method for visualizing breath that is exhaled while someone is speaking or singing could provide important new insights into how diseases such as Covid-19 spread and the effectiveness of face masks. “Scientists believe the SARS-CoV-2 virus is primarily spread through respiratory droplets that can be carried in the breath or expelled through coughing or sneezing,” said Thomas Moore from…

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SARS-CoV-2 vs the proteome

Researchers explore coronavirus interactions with cells

Scientists from Würzburg and the US have charted the first global atlas of direct interactions between SARS-CoV-2 RNA and human host cells. This may provide a starting point for novel treatments. SARS-CoV-2 infections pose a global threat to human health and a formidable research challenge. One of the most urgent tasks is to gain a detailed understanding of the molecular interactions between the…

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Wearable sensor

Covid sensor ring detects even subtle symptoms

A smart ring that generates continuous temperature data may foreshadow Covid-19, even in cases when infection is not suspected. The device, which may be a better illness indicator than a thermometer, could lead to earlier isolation and testing, curbing the spread of infectious diseases, according to a preliminary study led by UC San Francisco and UC San Diego.

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Rapid antigen testing at point of care

AI-assisted SARS-CoV-2 testing: Cooperation for first live project in Munich

Medicus AI announces the successful launch of its first live project under SafePlay, the digital platform supporting rapid antigen testing, which went live in partnership with Roche Diagnostics Germany and 21Dx in Munich this month. Medicus provides operators with a tech-enabled end-to-end solution that supports the logistical aspects of testing, managing the administrative workflow from…

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Natural variation impacts virus-relevant proteins

How SARS-CoV-2 benefits from helpers within the human body

Like all viruses, the novel coronavirus is dependent on help from the human host cell. Proteins are the functional units of the cell and enable the virus to enter the host cell or help the virus to replicate. Scientists from Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin and from the Berlin Institute of Health (BIH), along with colleagues from the United Kingdom, Germany and the United States, have…

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AI, apps and more

Digital health tools to fight Covid-19

A great deal of solutions using new technologies have been released to help tackle the Covid-19 pandemic and a panel of international experts shared a few examples during the Barcelona Health Summit last October. Contact-tracing apps are an interesting option to manage a pandemic, but the creation process can take a long time and must meet several requirements, according to a Dutch official who…

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Supply and demand

Covid-19 vaccine will probably be unavailable for many until 2022

Nearly a quarter of the world’s population may not have access to a covid-19 vaccine until at least 2022, warns a study published by The BMJ. A second study estimates that 3.7 billion adults worldwide are willing to have a covid-19 vaccine, highlighting the importance of designing fair and equitable strategies to ensure that supply can meet demand, especially in low and middle income countries.

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Digital health

AI test rules out Covid-19 diagnosis within one hour

An Artificial Intelligence test has been shown to be able to rapidly screen patients arriving in Emergency Departments for Covid-19, using clinical information routinely available within the first hour of coming to hospital. Results of the CURIAL study, published in The Lancet Digital Health, show that the AI test correctly predicted the Covid-19 status of 92.3% of patients coming to Emergency…

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Fractional exponents

New approach for more accurate epidemic modeling

A new class of epidemiological models based on alternative thinking about how contagions propagate, particularly in the early phases of a pandemic, provide a blueprint for more accurate epidemic modeling and improved disease spread predictions and responses, according to a study published recently in Scientific Reports by researchers at the University of California, Irvine and other institutions.

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Pandemic problems

Covid-19: risk increased sevenfold for healthcare workers

Healthcare workers are 7 times as likely to have severe Covid-19 infection as those with other types of ‘non-essential’ jobs, finds research focusing on the first UK-wide lockdown. And those with jobs in the social care and transport sectors are twice as likely to do so, emphasising the need to ensure that essential (key) workers are adequately protected against the infection, say the…

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Coronavirus imaging

Covid-19: Is CT more sensitive than PCR testing?

Covid-19 causes characteristic changes in lung tissue visible in CT scans and chest radiographs. The “ground-glass” opacities are sharply delineated areas, bilateral and mainly located in the basal and peripheral lung sections. In the course of the infection, the opacities become increasingly consolidated. In the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, when PCR tests (RT-PCR) were scarce and had…

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Pandemic management

How the Covid-19 crisis defines good leadership

A senior UK health figure has highlighted how contrasting leadership approaches are impacting the response to the global coronavirus crisis. Dr Clare Gerada also fears that response is affecting health professionals and leaders within the sector, with a significant rise numbers seeking help for mental health issues. Delivering the prestigious Sir Godfrey Hounsfield Lecture to the 2020 British…

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Open source framework

Here comes the AI healthcare era

Although the Covid-19 pandemic has put wind behind the sails of AI in healthcare, domain specific tools are needed to build and deploy AI and harness its power in data handling, training workflows and reproducibility of state-of-the-art approaches, according to Kimberly Powell, NVIDIA Vice President of Healthcare at the technology firm NVIDIA, presenter of a public address at RSNA 2020.

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The ‘new normal’ after Covid-19

Lung cancer screening: The slow return of mobile units

The coronavirus pandemic has had a severe impact on healthcare services but one area where that has been felt particularly deeply is with lung cancer screening. With sessions cancelled, treatment delays and social-distancing and safety requirements, many patients have been affected. However, as services begin to pick up again and lung cancer screening returns, three experts closely associated…

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Diagnosing SARS-CoV-2

The arsenal: Molecular (PCR), antigen and antibody testing

Germany’s lack of diagnostic ability led to significantly underestimation of its own as well as global Covid-19 infection levels during the first wave. Now, however, improved testing and diagnosis of the condition more realistically reveal nearer 20,000 new cases a day across the country, according to Professor Hendrik Streeck, one of the country’s leading virologists. Speaking at a virtual…

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