BioSpace.com

Biotech and Pharmaceutical
News & Jobs
Search the Site
 
   
Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Channel Medical Device and Diagnostics Channel Clinical Research Channel BioSpace Collaborative    Job Seekers:  Register | Login          Employers:  Register | Login  

NEWSLETTERS
Free Newsletters
Archive
My Subscriptions

NEWS
News by Subject
News by Disease
News by Date
PLoS
Search News
Post Your News
JoVE

CAREER NETWORK
Job Seeker Login
Most Recent Jobs
Browse Biotech Jobs
Search Jobs
Post Resume
Career Fairs
Career Resources
For Employers

HOTBEDS
Regional News
US & Canada
  Biotech Bay
  Biotech Beach
  Genetown
  Pharm Country
  BioCapital
  BioMidwest
  Bio NC
  BioForest
  Southern Pharm
  BioCanada East
  US Device
Europe
Asia

DIVERSITY

INVESTOR
Market Summary
News
IPOs

PROFILES
Company Profiles

START UPS
Companies
Events

INTELLIGENCE
Research Store

INDUSTRY EVENTS
Biotech Events
Post an Event
RESOURCES
Real Estate
Business Opportunities

 News | News By Subject | News by Disease News By Date | Search News
eNewsletter Signup
Miles
Km80.5

   

Texas A&M University Research Contributes to Improved Ultrasound Imaging


3/6/2013 9:02:21 AM

COLLEGE STATION, Texas, March 5, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Ultrasound technology could soon experience a significant upgrade that would enable it to produce high-quality, high-resolution images, thanks to the development of a new key material by a team of researchers that includes a professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Texas A&M University.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120502/DC99584LOGO)

The material, which converts ultrasound waves into optical signals that can be used to produce an image, is the result of a collaborative effort by Texas A&M Professor Vladislav Yakovlev and researchers from King's College London, The Queen's University of Belfast and the University of Massachusetts Lowell. Their findings appear in the current issue of "Advanced Materials."

The engineered material, known as a "metamaterial," offers significant advantages over conventional ultrasound technology, which generates images by converting ultrasound waves into electrical signals, Yakovlev explains. Although that technology has advanced throughout the years think of the improvement in sonogram images it is still largely constrained by bandwidth and sensitivity limitations, he says. These limitations, he adds, have been the chief obstacle when it comes to producing high-quality images that can serve as powerful diagnostic tools.

The metamaterial developed by Yakovlev and his colleagues is not subject to those limitations, primarily because it converts ultrasound waves into optical signals rather than electrical ones. The optical processing of the signal does not limit the bandwidth or sensitivity of the transducer (converter) and that's important for producing highly detailed images, Yakovlev says.

"A high bandwidth allows you to sample the change of distance of the acoustic waves with a high precision," Yakovlev notes. "This translates into an image that shows greater detail. Greater sensitivity enables you to see deeper in tissue, suggesting we have the potential to generate images that might have previously not been possible with conventional ultrasound technology."

In other words, this new material may enable ultrasound devices to see what they haven't yet been able to see. That advancement could significantly bolster a technology that is employed in a variety of biomedical applications. In addition to being used for visualizing fetuses during routine and emergency care, ultrasound is used for diagnostic purposes in incidents of trauma and even as a means of breaking up tissue and accelerating the effects of drugs therapies.

While Yakovlev's research is not yet ready for integration into ultrasound technology, it has successfully demonstrated how conventional technology can be substantially improved by using the newly engineering material created by his team, he notes.

The material, he notes, consists of golden nanorods embedded in a polymer known as polypyrrole. An optical signal is sent into this material where it interacts with and is altered by incoming ultrasound waves before passing through the material. A detection device would then read the altered optical signal, analyzing the changes in its optical properties to process a higher resolution image, Yakovlev explains.

"We developed a material that would enable optical signal processing of ultrasound," Yakovlev says. "Nothing like this material exists in nature so we engineered a material that would provide the properties we needed. It has greater sensitivity and broader bandwidth. We can go from 0-150 MHz without sacrificing the sensitivity. Current technology typically experiences a substantial decline in sensitivity around 50 MHz.

"This metamaterial can efficiently convert an acoustic wave into an optical signal without limiting the bandwidth of the transducer, and its potential biomedical applications represent the first practical implementation of this metamaterial."

Yakovlev's collaborators are Wayne Dickson and Anatoly Zayats of King's College London; John McPhillips, Antony Murphy and Robert Pollard of The Queen's University of Belfast; and Viktor Podolskiy of the University of Massachusetts Lowell.

About Research at Texas A&M University: As one of the world's leading research institutions, Texas A&M is in the vanguard in making significant contributions to the storehouse of knowledge, including that of science and technology. Research conducted at Texas A&M represents an annual investment of more than $700 million. That research creates new knowledge that provides basic, fundamental and applied contributions resulting in many cases in economic benefits to the state, nation and world.

More news about Texas A&M University, go to http://tamutimes.tamu.edu/

Follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tamu/

SOURCE Texas A&M University



Read at BioSpace.com

   

ADD TO DEL.ICIO.US    ADD TO DIGG    ADD TO FURL    ADD TO STUMBLEUPON    ADD TO TECHNORATI FAVORITES