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Lakshmi Sandhana

Lakshmi Sandhana

When Lakshmi first encountered pig's wings in a petri dish, she realized that writing about scientists and imagineers was the perfect way to live in an expanding mind bubble. Articles for Wired, BBC Online, New Scientist, The Economist and Fast Company soon followed. She's currently pursuing her dream of traveling from country to country to not only ferret out cool stories but also indulge outrageously in local street foods. When not working, you'll find her either buried nose deep in a fantasy novel or trying her hand at improvisational comedy.

— Medical

Silk-based functional inks put biosensor data on your fingertips

By - July 27, 2015 1 Picture

Although we've seen "bio-inks" that allow sensors to be drawn directly on a person's skin and other surfaces to gauge things like glucose levels, functional inks such as this are usually heat-sensitive, meaning they aren't suitable for use in inkjet printers. Researchers at Tufts University have now developed silk-based inks containing bacteria-sensing agents that can withstand the rigors of inkjet printing, opening the door much wider for printing biomolecules.

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— Automotive

Prototype electric vehicle passes first test on road to Antarctica

By - April 13, 2015 5 Pictures
The Venturi Antarctica, a prototype electric vehicle designed to tackle the harsh climes of Antarctica recently completed its first test drive in the Southern Alps of Europe. Manufactured by Venturi Automobiles, the joystick-controlled prototype seats five and can reach a top speed of 25 km/h (15 mph) on snow tracks and 45 km/h (27 mph) on wheels. When fully developed, the electric vehicle will allow scientists to drive to research sites without any risk of contaminating the samples to be collected. Read More
— Medical

Scientists create functioning "mini-lungs" to study cystic fibrosis

By - March 25, 2015 2 Pictures
Researchers at the University of Cambridge have grown functional "mini-lungs" using stems cells derived from the skin cells of patients with a debilitating lung disease. Not only can the development help them in coming up with effective treatments for specific lung diseases like cystic fibrosis, but the process has the potential to be scaled up to screen thousands of new compounds to identify potential new drugs. Read More
— Medical

Prosthetic arm takes alternate route to mind control

By - March 9, 2015 3 Pictures
Researchers from the Medical University of Vienna have developed a technique that allows amputees to control a robotic prosthesis with their mind when there's no neural connection left to exploit between the brain and the part of the hand that remains. Called "bionic reconstruction," the procedure was applied to three patients who were able to successfully use the prosthesis to undertake routine activities, thereby improving their quality of life. Read More
— Medical

Muscle injection could help burn more calories during routine activities

By - February 27, 2015 1 Picture
The future of weight loss could look like this. Inject your muscles with a compound that helps them burn more calories than usual and then do your daily chores to shed those extra pounds. That's the vision of a team of scientists who are working on a muscle-targeted injection therapy to help overweight people lose weight easily, even with low to moderate exercise. Read More
— Science

Tiny robotic hand-like grippers dissolve in the body after performing task

By - February 24, 2015 1 Picture
Creating swarms of soft, robotic hands that can safely dissolve within a living body once they've performed surgical procedures or delivered drugs just got a step closer thanks to work done by John Hopkins University scientists. They've created minute biodegradable microgrippers by adding stiff polymers containing magnetic nanoparticles to soft hydrogels, allowing them be magnetically guided to any location in the body. Read More
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