The ArtiSynth Project

February 10, 2008

CGI (Computer Generated Imagery) Computer Simulation is a powerful tool used by many computer scientists and engineers to simulate complicated physical systems and design new technologies. This powerful technique is currently employed by the UBC Media and Graphics Interdisciplinary Center (MAGIC) in their ArtiSynth Project.

ArtiSynth is a 3D Biomechanical Modeling Toolkit that allows computer scientists, engineers and even regular doctors to make complicated mathematical predictions of the human body. By combining rigid-body skeletal components as well as 3D finite element soft-body objects, the program allows its users to model the complex biomechanical interactions that occurs between the rigid bones and the soft muscles of the human body.

Though it is still in its development phase, ArtiSynth is already used in many medical research projects including the OPAL Project.

Using ArtiSynth, researchers have constructed a 3D computer model of the human pharyngeal and laryngeal complex. This model can be used to measure internal forces and neuromotor activation levels of the muscles around the oralpharangeal area and determine the effects of muscle damage and paralysis (due to surgery or stroke) on swallowing and speech.

The ArtiSynth Project
OPAL Project


Philips, Intel to offer medical device

March 1, 2007

On the hills of the announcement of the C5 Medical Tablet, Philips and Intel also released a tablet PC based on Intel’s Mobile Clinical Assistant platform.

Philips, one of the world’s largest makers of medical equipment, said the device, replete with touch screen and digital camera, had numerous uses. Among them: “to reduce medication errors, positively identify staff and patients, fill out charts, capture vital signs, write up reports and validate blood transfusions, as well as (provide) the ability to closely monitor the healing of wounds.”

Yahoo! News


UBC student recovers heart function after needing two heart pumps

February 23, 2007

Some of you might remember a posting from last November about how artificial heart pumps can be used to rejuvenate dying hearts.  It turns out that the only person in Canada and one of very few people in the world to have recovered heart function after needing two simultaneous heart pumps to keep her heart pumping is a UBC student, Marrie!

 Read her story

Intelligent tooth automatically releases drugs – available by 2010

February 22, 2007

Researchers are developing an artificial tooth that automatically releases drugs. The device, called Intellidrug, works by holding the drug in tablet form in a reservoir which will release the drug. It might be used for conditions that require a constant level of drug in the blood, such as diabetes and high blood pressure.

“With this system, we can time the dosage to take place – even when the patient is sleeping.

“We can easily adjust the dosage in line with the patient’s needs, dependent on sex or weight.”

Also, it might be useful for those with chronic conditions.

“About 50% of people with chronic conditions do not take their medicines correctly and that in turn costs the health service money.”

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High-tech patient wristbands now carry personal data

February 16, 2007

A hospital in England has added electronic tags to wristbands to store patient personal information such as a digital photo of the patient and details of the care they need. These high-tech wristbands are used to increase patient safety by allowing hospital staff to read the tag details using a PDA and ensure they are treating the right person. They are also used to see what checks the patient has had, or if they are ready for surgery, to ensure they get the right drugs, tests and operations via the checklist on the PDA.

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First Bionic Arms. Then Bionic Legs. Now Bionic Eyes. – are featured on our website

February 16, 2007

US researchers have developed a bionic eye implant that could help restore the sight of millions of blind people. And it could be available to patients within 2 years!

More information:

Trials for ‘bionic’ eye implants
By Jonathan Fildes
Science and technology reporter, BBC News, San Francisco
Published: Friday, 16 February 2007, 10:48 GMT

Other postings about bionic limbs:

HUGO’s 12th Human Genome Meeting

February 12, 2007

The Human Genome Organisation (HUGO) will be sponsoring 50 FREE REGISTRATIONS TO CANADIAN STUDENTS to attend:

HUGO‘s 12th Human Genome Meeting
Montreal, Canada
Mon 21-Thu 24 May 2007

The mission of HGM2007 is to help delegates update and expand their knowledge in the ever-evolving field of human genome research. A stimulating and interesting programme of plenary lectures, symposia, workshops, poster presentations, and social events make HGM2007 and ideal forum to share information and results with researchers in both science and industry. This is an increasingly exciting time for scientists working on the Human Genome, and HGM2007 provides an opportunity for participants to establish international collaborations.

For more information about the sponsorship, please visit the following website: