Single-cell technologies to study the immune system.
ABSTRACT: The immune system is composed of a variety of cells that act in a coordinated fashion to protect the organism against a multitude of different pathogens. The great variability of existing pathogens corresponds to a similar high heterogeneity of the immune cells. The study of individual immune cells, the fundamental unit of immunity, has recently transformed from a qualitative microscopic imaging to a nearly complete quantitative transcriptomic analysis. This shift has been driven by the rapid development of multiple single-cell technologies. These new advances are expected to boost the detection of less frequent cell types and transient or intermediate cell states. They will highlight the individuality of each single cell and greatly expand the resolution of current available classifications and differentiation trajectories. In this review we discuss the recent advancement and application of single-cell technologies, their limitations and future applications to study the immune system.
Project description:There has been a rapid advancement in the pace of development of new diabetes technologies and therapies for the management of type 1 diabetes over the past decade. The Diabetes Control and Complications Trial conclusively established that tight glycemic control with intensive insulin therapy decreases the rates of diabetes complications in proportion to glycemic control, and diabetes technologies have accordingly been developed to help patients reach these goals. In this review, the authors discuss new diabetes therapeutics and technologies, including new insulin analogues, insulin pumps, continuous glucose monitoring systems, and automated insulin delivery systems.”
Project description:Ever since the development of the first vaccine more than 200 years ago, vaccinations have greatly decreased the burden of infectious diseases worldwide, famously leading to the eradication of small pox and allowing the restriction of diseases such as polio, tetanus, diphtheria, and measles. A multitude of research efforts focuses on the improvement of established and the discovery of new vaccines such as the HPV (human papilloma virus) vaccine in 2006. However, radical changes in the density, age distribution and traveling habits of the population worldwide as well as the changing climate favor the emergence of old and new pathogens that bear the risk of becoming pandemic threats. In recent years, the rapid spread of severe infections such as HIV, SARS, Ebola, and Zika have highlighted the dire need for global preparedness for pandemics, which necessitates the extremely rapid development and comprehensive distribution of vaccines against potentially previously unknown pathogens. What is more, the emergence of antibiotic resistant bacteria calls for new approaches to prevent infections. Given these changes, established methods for the identification of new vaccine candidates are no longer sufficient to ensure global protection. Hence, new vaccine technologies able to achieve rapid development as well as large scale production are of pivotal importance. This review will discuss viral vector and nucleic acid-based vaccines (DNA and mRNA vaccines) as new approaches that might be able to tackle these challenges to global health.
Project description:The handling of single cells is of great importance in applications such as cell line development or single-cell analysis, e.g., for cancer research or for emerging diagnostic methods. This review provides an overview of technologies that are currently used or in development to isolate single cells for subsequent single-cell analysis. Data from a dedicated online market survey conducted to identify the most relevant technologies, presented here for the first time, shows that FACS (fluorescence activated cell sorting) respectively Flow cytometry (33% usage), laser microdissection (17%), manual cell picking (17%), random seeding/dilution (15%), and microfluidics/lab-on-a-chip devices (12%) are currently the most frequently used technologies. These most prominent technologies are described in detail and key performance factors are discussed. The survey data indicates a further increasing interest in single-cell isolation tools for the coming years. Additionally, a worldwide patent search was performed to screen for emerging technologies that might become relevant in the future. In total 179 patents were found, out of which 25 were evaluated by screening the title and abstract to be relevant to the field.
Project description:The investigation of human disease mechanisms is difficult due to the heterogeneity in gene expression and the physiological state of cells in a given population. In comparison to bulk cell measurements, single-cell measurement technologies can provide a better understanding of the interactions among molecules, organelles, cells, and the microenvironment, which can aid in the development of therapeutics and diagnostic tools. In recent years, single-cell technologies have become increasingly robust and accessible, although limitations exist. In this review, we describe the recent advances in single-cell technologies and their applications in single-cell manipulation, diagnosis, and therapeutics development.
Project description:Neural recording electrode technologies have contributed considerably to neuroscience by enabling the extracellular detection of low-frequency local field potential oscillations and high-frequency action potentials of single units. Nevertheless, several long-standing limitations exist, including low multiplexity, deleterious chronic immune responses and long-term recording instability. Driven by initiatives encouraging the generation of novel neurotechnologies and the maturation of technologies to fabricate high-density electronics, novel electrode technologies are emerging. Here, we provide an overview of recently developed neural recording electrode technologies with high spatial integration, long-term stability and multiple functionalities. We describe how these emergent neurotechnologies can approach the ultimate goal of illuminating chronic brain activity with minimal disruption of the neural environment, thereby providing unprecedented opportunities for neuroscience research in the future.
Project description:The past two decades have brought impressive advancements in immune modulation, particularly with the advent of both cancer immunotherapy and biologic therapeutics for inflammatory conditions. However, the dynamic nature of the immune response often complicates the assessment of therapeutic outcomes. Innovative imaging technologies are designed to bridge this gap and allow non-invasive visualization of immune cell presence and/or function in real time. A variety of anatomical and molecular imaging modalities have been applied for this purpose, with each option providing specific advantages and drawbacks. Anatomical methods including magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computed tomography (CT), and ultrasound provide sharp tissue resolution, which can be further enhanced with contrast agents, including super paramagnetic ions (for MRI) or nanobubbles (for ultrasound). Conjugation of the contrast material to an antibody allows for specific targeting of a cell population or protein of interest. Protein platforms including antibodies, cytokines, and receptor ligands are also popular choices as molecular imaging agents for positron emission tomography (PET), single-photon emission computerized tomography (SPECT), scintigraphy, and optical imaging. These tracers are tagged with either a radioisotope or fluorescent molecule for detection of the target. During the design process for immune-monitoring imaging tracers, it is important to consider any potential downstream physiologic impact. Antibodies may deplete the target cell population, trigger or inhibit receptor signaling, or neutralize the normal function(s) of soluble proteins. Alternatively, the use of cytokines or other ligands as tracers may stimulate their respective signaling pathways, even in low concentrations. As in vivo immune imaging is still in its infancy, this review aims to describe the modalities and immunologic targets that have thus far been explored, with the goal of promoting and guiding the future development and application of novel imaging technologies.
Project description:Ultrasound detection is one of the major components of photoacoustic imaging systems. Advancement in ultrasound transducer technology has a significant impact on the translation of photoacoustic imaging to the clinic. Here, we present an overview on various ultrasound transducer technologies including conventional piezoelectric and micromachined transducers, as well as optical ultrasound detection technology. We explain the core components of each technology, their working principle, and describe their manufacturing process. We then quantitatively compare their performance when they are used in the receive mode of a photoacoustic imaging system.
Project description:Novel mobile assessment and intervention capabilities are changing the face of physical activity (PA) research. A comprehensive systematic review of how mobile technology has been used for measuring PA and promoting PA behavior change is needed.Article collection was conducted using six databases from February to June 2012 with search terms related to mobile technology and PA. Articles that described the use of mobile technologies for PA assessment, sedentary behavior assessment, and/or interventions for PA behavior change were included. Articles were screened for inclusion and study information was extracted.Analyses were conducted from June to September 2012. Mobile phone-based journals and questionnaires, short message service (SMS) prompts, and on-body PA sensing systems were the mobile technologies most utilized. Results indicate that mobile journals and questionnaires are effective PA self-report measurement tools. Intervention studies that reported successful promotion of PA behavior change employed SMS communication, mobile journaling, or both SMS and mobile journaling.mHealth technologies are increasingly being employed to assess and intervene on PA in clinical, epidemiologic, and intervention research. The wide variations in technologies used and outcomes measured limit comparability across studies, and hamper identification of the most promising technologies. Further, the pace of technologic advancement currently outstrips that of scientific inquiry. New adaptive, sequential research designs that take advantage of ongoing technology development are needed. At the same time, scientific norms must shift to accept "smart," adaptive, iterative, evidence-based assessment and intervention technologies that will, by nature, improve during implementation.