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In the future...

how will we thrive?





Host: Dr Karthikeyan Kandan, Senior Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering, De Montfort University

An expert engineer at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) has successfully manufactured the world’s first prosthetic limb socket by upcycling used plastic water bottles. Dr Karthikeyan Kandan, Senior Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering at DMU, found he could grind the plastic bottles down and use the granulated material to spin polyester yarns, which can then be heated up to form a solid yet lightweight material that can be moulded into prosthetic limbs. Highlighting the potentially substantial financial savings for healthcare providers, the researchers state that the cost of producing a prosthetic socket using this method is just £10, compared to the current industry average of around £5,000 each. 

Watch this Extraordinary Insight here.





Host: Dean Harris, Clinical Director, CanSense Ltd

This session will provide an overview of challenges of colorectal cancer detection and emerging solutions​.

Watch this Extraordinary Insight here.




can small machines make us better?

Host: James McLaughlin, Head of School of Engineering, University of Ulster

Miniaturisation could be set to revolutionise medical interventions. Creating healthcare technology systems that can be miniaturised was  science fiction a few years ago but is now starting to make a debut in new diagnostics and treatments. James to consider the impact of such delivery mechanisms. 

Watch this Extraordinary Insight here.




Gene therapy: Transforming the lives of children and families

Host: Professor Claire Booth, Mahboubian Professor in Gene Therapy at UCL Great Ormond Institute of Child Health (ICH) and Consultant in Paediatric Immunology, Great Ormond Street Hospital

Great Ormond Street Hospital and the UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health have been at the forefront of the gene therapy field for over 20 years and continue to develop new therapies to cure genetic diseases with much of the pioneering research now taking place at the Zayed Centre for Research into Rare Disease in Children. Using modified viruses, the team has been able to correct blood stem cells from patients with several immune system diseases, allowing them to develop working immune systems and lead a normal life. This approach has now been used to treat metabolic diseases and blood disorders too. New gene-editing technologies are also being investigated to improve results and treat a wider range of diseases.  

To find out more about Great Ormond Street Hospital, please click here.

Watch this Extraordinary Insight here.




An opportunity to help us detect early-stage Alzheimer's disease 

Host: Dr Javier Escudero, Chancellor's Fellow, University of Edinburgh

Javier's main goal is to reveal the subtle changes that major diseases cause in brain activity. By developing and applying signal processing methods, he aims at increasing our understanding of how several brain conditions progress. Of particular interest is the evaluation of brain functional connectivity in both neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative diseases to understand how they affect the way in which different brain regions interact with each other. He is also interested in the interplay between structure and function in the brain and in the application of pattern recognition techniques to highly-dimensional clinical datasets to support decision making. He works in the development of non-invasive methods for rehabilitation purposes, being either the dexterous controls prostheses for amputees or brain-computer interfaces. The Extraordinary Insight talk will look at his findings and hope for the future of making the lives of those with dementia far better, as well as identify ways the incidence of this disability could be reduced.

To find out more about the University of Edinburgh, please click here.

Watch this Extraordinary Insight here.

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