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Engineered-Microparticle-Based Cell Carriers For Culture And Adhesive Flow Cytometry

The Di Carlo group at UCLA has invented a microparticle that enables the analysis of adherent cells by flow cytometry. In addition, they have developed a high-throughput method to fabricate these microparticles.

Novel cyanobacteriochromes responsive to light in the far-red to near-infrared region

Researchers at the University of California, Davis have identified new cyanobacteriochromes (CBCRs) that detect and fluoresce in the far-red and near-infrared region of the electromagnetic spectrum.

An Accelerated Phase-Contrast MRI Technique

UCLA researchers in the Department Radiological Sciences have developed a technique for accelerated phase-contrast MRI, reducing total image acquisition time in the collection of high-resolution data.

Optical Phase Retrieval Systems Using Color-Multiplexed Illumination

Light is a wave, having both an amplitude and phase. Our eyes and cameras, however, only see real values (i.e. intensity), so cannot measure phase directly. Phase is important, especially in biological imaging, where cells are typically transparent (i.e. invisible) but yet impose phase delays. When we can measure the phase delays, we get back important shape and density maps.   Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley have developed a new method for recovering both phase and amplitude of an arbitrary sample in an optical microscope from a single image, using patterned partially coherent illumination. The hardware requirements are compatible with most modern microscopes via a simple condenser insert, or by replacing the entire illumination pathway with a programmable LED array, providing flexibility, portability, and affordability, while eliminating many of the trade-offs required by other methods. This enables quantitative imaging of phase from a single image, using partially coherent illumination, and in a way that is flexible and amenable to a variety of existing microscopy systems. 

Efficient Method to Improve the Temporal Signal-to-Noise of Arterial Spin Labeling for MRI

In conventional vessel encoded pseudo-continuous arterial spin labeling (PASL), the temporal signal to noise (tSNR) is improved by repeatedly applying pulsed labeling pulses in between Look-Locker readouts.  This works optimally when the temporal width of the tagged boluses matches the inter-pulse spacing. However, because the feeding arteries generally have different velocities and geometries, the conventional labeling slab fails to achieve desirable tSNR.  

Software for auto-generation of text reports from radiology studies

Imaging machines used for radiology studies often export data (such as vascular velocities, bone densitometry, radiation dose, etc.) as characters stored in image format. Radiologists are expected to interpret this data and also store it in their text-based reports of the studies. This is usually accomplished by dictating the data into the text report or copying it by typing it. However, these methods are error-prone and time-intensive.

A Real-time Intraoperative Fluorescent Imaging Device for Guided Surgical Excision of Microscopic Residual Tumors

This novel real-time imaging device can provide precise and rapid pathological imaging information of the tumor area by utilizing fluorescent or luminescent markers within the body to ensure complete surgical resection.

Planning Algorithm for Anatomically Precise Drug Infusions in Brain or Other Solid Tissue

This invention is a simulation algorithm to develop infusion parameters that precisely target anatomical structures in solid tissue (i.e. substructures in the brain).

Molecular Photoswitches as MRI Contrast Agents Sensitive to Light/Bioluminescence

Researchers at the University of California, Davis have developed a light-activated gadolinium contrast agent.

Novel Software for Generating Attenuation Correction Maps with MRI for PET Reconstruction

This invention can accurately and rapidly map patient bone structure and classify all tissue types such as fatty soft tissue, water soft tissue, lung tissue, bone, and air within a single scan using novel MRI acquisition and reconstruction techniques.

Patient-Specific Ct Scan-Based Finite Element Modeling (FEM) Of Bone

This invention is a software for calculating the maximum force a bone can support. The offered method provides an accurate assessment of how changes in a bone due to special circumstances, such as osteoporosis or a long duration space flight, might increase patient’s risk of fracture.

A Method For Determining Characteristic Planes And Axes Of Bones And Other Body Parts, And Application To Registration Of Data Sets

The invention is a method for deriving an anatomical coordinate system for a body part (especially bone) to aid in its characterization. The method relies on 3-D digital images of an anatomical object, such as CT- or MR-scans, to objectively, precisely, and reliably identify its geometry in a computationally efficient manner. The invention is a great improvement over the current practice of subjective, user-dependent manual data entry and visualization of bones and organs. The applications for well-defined anatomical coordinate systems include robotic surgeries, models for bone density studies, and construction of statistical anatomical data sets.

Versatile, Modular and Affordable Microwave and Radiofrequency Magnetic Resonance Setup for Dynamic Nuclear Polarization

A DNP setup operating at a magnetic field at or above 5 Tesla, powered by a solid state microwave source, transmitted using low loss quasi optics and utilizes an externally tunable, inductively coupled radio frequency probe integrated into part of the waveguide to provide efficient microwave transmission to the sample while maintaining good NMR performance and complete hardware modularity.

A Novel Reversible Fluorescent Protein Complementation Assay for Imaging of Protein-protein Interactions

This invention provides a method for characterizing protein-protein interactions using a novel reversible bimolecular fluorescence complementation assay.

Bio-Imaging Of Aldehyde Dehydrogenase Activity

Aldehyde Dehydrogenase (ALDH) activity is essential for generating cancer stem cells and drug resistance in cancer stem cells, which are the primary cause of treatment failure in oncology. Similarly, ALDH activity also plays a therapeutic role in a variety of inflammatory diseases and is needed for tissue regeneration and wound healing after a myocardial infarct, the detoxification of xenobiotics in the liver, the alleviation of pain, and the prevention of Parkinson’s disease. There is therefore great interest in developing small molecules that can inhibit or activate ALDH activity, however, this is currently challenging because of the inability to measure ALDH activity in cells.  The current method measures ALDH in cells indirectly, via ALDH substrates that are unable to distinguish between non-specific accumulation and genuine ALDH activity, and can only indirectly measure ALDH activity via flow cytometry.  UC Berkeley researchers have developed bio-imaging agents to image ALDH activity in cells. The new agents can spectrally distinguish between the small electronegativity differences between an aldehyde and a carboxylate and are exceptionally sensitive to changes in electronegativity.   

UCLA Inventors Create Platform Technology to Create Customizable Materials for Imaging and Detection

UCLA researchers in the Departments of Chemistry, Physics, and Bioengineering, led by Dr. Tim Deming of the Bioengineering department, have developed a platform to create and modify nanoscale vesicles and hydrogels for use in imaging and detection.The poly-peptide based platforms created by the Deming group are customizable in nearly all physical characteristics, can be tailored in size, be loaded with hydrophobic and hydrophilic payloads, adaptable to specific delivery locations, low toxicity, are fully synthetic, possess highly reproducible properties, and are inexpensive to prepare compared to solid-phase peptide synthesis.The platform can be used to create novel, need-based nanoscale vesicles or injectable hydrogels, and can also be used to augment existing nanoparticles.

Measurement Of Blood Flow Dynamics With X-Ray Computed Tomography: Dynamic Ct Angiography

This invention identifies a method to accurately measure flow dynamics, such as velocity and volume, from Computed Tomography scans of blood vessels in a patient.

Beta-Amyloid Plaque Imaging Agents

Current imaging agents for labelling β-amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles (NFT), which are indicators for Alzheimer’s disease, suffer from drawbacks such as (but not limited to) non-specific binding, low target to non-target ratio, instability, and inefficient labelling. Researchers at UC Irvine have developed an imaging agent and its derivatives for labelling β-amyloid plaques and NFTs that overcome these problems and also provide therapeutic properties in vivo for the neural tissues. The labelling agent also binds to norepinephrine transporters (NET) and are taken up into the cells via the NET, therefore serving as suitable agents for diagnostic and/or therapeutic purposes involving disorders or conditions associated with NET.

Design and Synthesis of Fluoroalkylpyridyl Ethers as Potential Pet Radioligands for A4B2 Nicotinic Acetylcholine / Labeled A4B2 Ligands and Methods Therefor

Researchers have developed compounds to bind to α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors to evoke antagonistic effects both in vitro and in vivo environments.

Dynamic Contrast Optical Coherence Tomography (DyC-OCT): An improved method to quantify blood flow dynamics in deep tissue and microvasculature

Dynamic Contrast Optical Coherence Tomography (DyC-OCT) is a non-invasive technique that obtains high resolution images of blood flow dynamics in deep tissue. It involves real time imaging of the passage of a contrast agent through the vascular and capillary networks. Data analysis can then reveal detailed information on the temporal and spatial dynamics of blood flow.

An integrated intraoperative diagnosis and therapy catheter system

In traditional cardiology and oncology, disease diagnosis and treatment are traditionally separate procedures resulting in increased costs and delayed treatment, which, in some cases, may increase morbidity. Therefore, a system that can diagnose and treat diseases simultaneously would greatly decrease costs and provide timely treatment, which may prevent death from the disease. Researchers in the Department of Engineering at UC Irvine, in collaboration with researchers at Shanghai Jio Tong University in China have invented a multimodal system for the diagnosis and treatment of cancer and cardiac disease. Summary of development The present invention describes an intraoperative imaging and therapy catheter system for the accurate diagnosis and treatment of cancer and cardiac disease. This multimodal medical device combines imaging, cryosurgery, and thermal therapy thereby permitting accurate diagnosis and treatment of vulnerable plaques in blood vessels and various types of cancers. In addition, by adding low cost imaging modalities such as optical coherence tomography (OCT), ultrasound imaging, photoacoustic (PA) imaging, fluorescence imaging and thermal imaging, cryosurgery can be performed with much higher accuracy. Importantly, addition of these imaging systems enables accurate identification of lesion sites, precise depth of cryosurgery/heating probe placement, and the capability to monitor the extent of the freezing/heating process. Furthermore, the invention may include intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) facilitating visualization of cross-sectional images of the vessel wall, entire large lipid pools, and large tumor regions. These parameters are valuable for the guidance of cryoplasty regarding the treatment time, temperature and location.

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