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Yes, nanoscience can enhance humans – but ethical guidelines must be agreed

People 'enhanced' into spider-climbing individuals with hugely projected breasts and Einstein-brains… Where will it stop?Engineers are trained to try to figure out how to achieve things that humans cannot and in nanoscience and nanotechnology that challenge is no different.Many of the most exciting advances in the field try to improve human incapacities with things such as memory, hearing, stamina or intellect. In my field of nanomedicine, the notion of human enhancement is, in a lot of cases, a way to deal with disease: enhancing vision, cognitive functions or improving a person's ability to move independently.I have always found the relationship between technology and its use to "aid" or "enhance" human capability intriguing because there is a fine line beyond which all kinds of ethical alarms go off. Where does human enhancement against true pathological conditions or disabilities end?Thoughts like these were on my mind last autumn on a plane to Taiwan, when I watched the latest movie version of one my favourite comic-book heros, Spider-man. The main character, a very normal, scientifically talented and altruistic teenager (who truly wants to save the world) is bitten by an experimental transgenic spider, which results in his transformation into a man-spider hybrid. This concept is a classic method used in science fiction to explain the creation of characters with super-human powers. Interestingly, the transformation almost always occurs after ex...
Source: Guardian Unlimited Science - Category: Science Authors: Tags: Blogposts Biology guardian.co.uk Medical research Nanotechnology Human biology Science Source Type: news

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Wearables may have notable potential as an assistive technology for persons with various difficulties. Although quite popular, smartwatches' niches are still revealing. One of them is definitely in the domain of assistive technology due to their communication and location features. Positioning features enable parents or caregivers to know the whereabouts of child or persons with disabilities, thus increasing their safety. The paper presents smartwatch tracking system for people with complex communication needs with emphasis on detection of smartwatch wearer's common movement routes. The application is a result of multidisc...
Source: International Journal of E-Health and Medical Communications - Category: Information Technology Authors: Tags: Health Information Systems Medical & Healthcare IS Source Type: research
Poor communication between the Registered Nurse and a hearing impaired patient can affect quality of care and health outcomes. Communication skills training programs for healthcare providers are needed to improve patient centered care. A descriptive research study, using a knowledge assessment tool developed and validated by the researcher, was conducted on 339 Registered Nurses to identify knowledge deficits to be addressed in a communication skills training program being designed. The educational tool measured the Registered Nurses' knowledge across four areas - hearing impairment, hearing aids, communication strategies,...
Source: Nurse Education in Practice - Category: Nursing Authors: Tags: Original research Source Type: research
AbstractPurpose of ReviewOphthalmologic conditions were among the earliest described findings in patients with the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). The purpose of this review is to highlight recent changes in the pathophysiology and management of ophthalmologic conditions in patients infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).Recent FindingsThe introduction of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) in 1996 changed ophthalmologic findings from predominantly acute infectious diseases to chronic, slowly progressive, debilitating conditions. HIV-associated neuroretinal disorder infrequently leads to b...
Source: Current Infectious Disease Reports - Category: Infectious Diseases Source Type: research
The answer: We need to address what’s happening inside the office as well as stigma. During the creation of the documentary Going Sane I interviewed Cindy Bulik. She is perhaps the most important researcher on anorexia today. She lives between UNC where she is a distinguished Professor of Eating Disorders and Sweden where she is a professor at the Karolinska Institute. Her current research is exploring genetic influences on anorexia and by the end of our interview she asked if my entire family would be willing to give a sample of blood for the study. She is not the single-minded professor oblivious to social customs...
Source: Psych Central - Category: Psychiatry Authors: Tags: Disabilities Disorders Editorials Essays Medications Motivation and Inspiration Policy and Advocacy Psychology Psychotherapy Suicide Treatment Child Development child therapy Clinical Outcome evidence-based practices evidence Source Type: news
CONCLUSIONS: A lack of acceptance emerged from the discussion of capabilities and limitations of haptic assistive technologies. Future researches shall go towards miniaturized, custom-designed and low-cost haptic interfaces and integration with personal devices such as smartphones for a major diffusion of sensory aids among disabled. Implications for rehabilitation Systematic review of state of the art of haptic assistive technologies for vision and audition sensory disabilities. Sensory substitution systems for visual and hearing disabilities have a central role in the transmission of information for patients with sensory...
Source: Disability and Rehabilitation. Assistive Technology. - Category: Rehabilitation Authors: Tags: Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol Source Type: research
With a disabled AIDS virus, doctors supply a gene to boys with a degenerative neural condition.
Source: NYT Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Brain Genetics and Heredity Stem Cells Adrenoleukodystrophy (ALD) Clinical Trials Source Type: news
CONCLUSIONS: These findings highlight the complicated nature of internalized HIV stigma. Whilst it is seemingly a psychological process, indirect pathways suggest multi-level mechanisms leading to internalized HIV stigma. Findings suggest that protection from violence within homes, communities and schools may interrupt risk pathways from HIV-related health problems to psychological distress and internalized HIV stigma. This highlights the potential for interventions that do not explicitly target adolescents living with HIV but are sensitive to their needs. PMID: 28953329 [PubMed - in process]
Source: Journal of the International AIDS Society - Category: Infectious Diseases Tags: J Int AIDS Soc Source Type: research
This article critically reviews the utility of “phenotypes” as behavioral descriptors in aging/HIV research that inform biological underpinnings and treatment development. We adopt a phenotypic redefinition of aging conceptualized within a broader context of HIV infection and of aging. Phenotypes are defined asdimensions of behavior, closely related to fundamental mechanisms, and, thus, may be more informative than chronological age. Primary emphasis in this review is given to comorbid aging and cognitive aging, though other phenotypes (i.e., disability, frailty, accelerated aging, successful aging) are also di...
Source: Current HIV/AIDS Reports - Category: Infectious Diseases Source Type: research
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Pharmacy Benefits Management Services and the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) recently announced a collaboration in which the VA will use the ICER’s drug assessments as part of its formulary development and price negotiations. This type of relationship might be normal outside of the United States (for example, in the United Kingdom, Germany, and Australia), where input from governmental health technology assessment organizations is used in determining health care coverage decisions. However, in the United States—with our multipayer health care system cov...
Source: Health Affairs Blog - Category: Health Management Authors: Tags: Costs and Spending Drugs and Medical Innovation Insurance and Coverage Payment Policy Population Health Department of Veterans Affairs drug pricing Institute for Clinical and Economic Review pharmaceuticals quality of care Veterans' He Source Type: blogs
On September 13, Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT)—with 16 Democratic cosponsors—released the Medicare-For-All Act of 2017, intended to transition the American health care system to a single-payer system. In addition to the bill text, Senator Sanders released an executive summary, title summary, and white paper on financing options. The Act would establish the Universal Medicare Program (UMP) and, in doing so, make sweeping changes to the health care system. Once the UMP went into effect (for children, on January 1 of the first calendar year after the bill is enacted and three years later for adults), most benefits...
Source: Health Affairs Blog - Category: Health Management Authors: Tags: Following the ACA Insurance and Coverage Bernie Sanders single payer Source Type: blogs
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