Designer invents self-testing HIV kit made out of recycled plastic

October 23, 2019 by  
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One of the largest obstacles in HIV prevention is the lack of clinics and resources in developing countries around the world. Now, British product designer Hans Ramzan has unveiled a solution that could potentially save thousands of lives. CATCH is a low-cost, self-testing HIV kit, partly made from recycled plastic, that is designed to help individuals check for HIV in their own homes, reducing the need to travel miles to the nearest clinic. As a leading cause of death around the world, HIV infected about 1.7 million individuals in 2018 alone , and nearly 40 million people are living with HIV globally. Despite these massive numbers, early detection is nearly impossible for many who live in rural areas that don’t have clinics nearby. Due to the lack of resources that would otherwise help patients detect HIV in its early stages, many people develop AIDS, which often leads to death. The situation is dire and has been for years, but CATCH might be able to change that. Related: New study claims climate change could be linked to heart defects in newborns CATCH is a low-cost testing kit that allows individuals to face fewer long trips to the nearest clinic. The innovative finger kit is extremely intuitive and can be used by anyone. In just three simple steps, people can check their status. The first step is to slide the disinfectant sleeve over the finger. Then, push down on the pipette/needle-top. and finally press the button to see the result. Made partly out of recycled plastic , the design is eco-friendly and affordable. The production price of one CATCH kit is £4 (approximately $5). According to Ramzan, the innovative design was inspired by his own experience of losing someone. “After witnessing my aunt pass away due to a life-threatening illness, it was heart-breaking,” Ramzan said. “If she had her illness caught earlier, perhaps her chances of survival would have been greater. That’s when something clicked — too many people are dying due to late diagnosis.” + Hans Ramzan Images via Hans Ramzan

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Designer invents self-testing HIV kit made out of recycled plastic

Desmond Tutu Clinic welcomes HIV patients with a striking sawtooth roof

June 12, 2019 by  
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In the Cape Town township of Masiphumelele, approximately 30 percent of the residents are infected with HIV. To help the low-income community, South African architectural practice theMAAK partnered with the Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation (DTHF) to build a striking new public building to serve the area. Topped with a sawtooth roof, the humanitarian structure sports a dynamic facade that puts forth a confident and welcoming face for the DTHF. Located next to Masiphumelele High School, the recently completed Desmond Tutu Clinic spans nearly 5,400 square feet and is one of several clinics that the DTHF has built in communities around South Africa. The clinic not only serves as a new home for the Foundation’s industry-leading medical work, but also takes the social needs of the area into consideration by welcoming visitors with a new social forecourt. Related: Incredible luxury tree house is hidden away in a Cape Town forest “Balancing ‘striking and welcoming’, ‘bold and subtle’, the sawtoothed building appropriately addresses both the ambition and prestige of the internationally acclaimed research of DTHF as well as the sensitive human nature of their work,” the architects said. “It is on arrival that the new building shows its proudest face. From this angle, the north-facing aluminium facade fins optically compound to form a confident new image for DTHF. Seeing this strong formal presence as you approach the scheme, clearly marks a positive and impressive move forward for the Foundation and their growing footprint in developing communities around South Africa. Moving across the site, and changing one’s angle of view, the dynamic facade thins to subtly reveal the inner workings of the facility.” The zigzagging outline of the sawtooth roof is most visible on the north and south facades; the northern facade was made more prominent to mark the entrance. The roof’s geometry calls attention to the public building and lets in southern light into offices on the upper floor, while overhangs help shield the light-sensitive lab spaces on the ground floor. + theMAAK Photography by theMAAK and Anton Scholtz

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Researchers engineer new antibody able to fight 99% of HIV strains

September 26, 2017 by  
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Researchers have made what the International Aids Society called an “exciting breakthrough” in the fight against HIV/AIDS . Pharmaceutical company Sanofi and the United States National Institutes of Health (NIH) together engineered an antibody that can tackle 99 percent of HIV strains. The antibody has prevented infection in primates . The new antibody can interact with three crucial parts of the HIV virus. And it targets more strains than naturally occurring antibodies, the best of which attack 90 percent of strains. Researchers ran experiments on 24 monkeys. They gave one antibody to eight monkeys, a different one to another eight, and the final eight they gave the new antibody. Five days later they exposed the monkeys to strains of SHIV, a monkey form of HIV. None of those given the new antibody developed an infection. Related: 44-year-old British man could be the first to receive HIV cure The antibody is called a tri-specific antibody because it’s a combination of three broadly neutralizing antibodies. NIH described it as a three-in-one antibody. Broadly neutralizing antibodies tackle “something fundamental to HIV” according to the BBC. Sanofi Chief Scientific Officer Gary Nabel said tri-specific antibodies “can block multiple targets with a single agent.” He told the BBC, “They are more potent and have greater breadth than any single naturally occurring antibody that’s been discovered.” International Aids Society president Linda-Gail Bekker told the BBC, “These super-engineered antibodies seem to go beyond the natural and could have more applications than we have imagined to date. It’s early days yet, and as a scientist I look forward to seeing the first trials get off the ground in 2018. As a doctor in Africa , I feel the urgency to confirm these findings in humans as soon as possible.” The journal Science published the study last week. Scientists from Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and The Scripps Research Institute also collaborated on the research. Human trials are slated to begin next year. Via the BBC and the National Institutes of Health Images via NIAID on Flickr and Sanofi

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Nearly 10,000 plants grow on NYCs largest public indoor green wall

September 26, 2017 by  
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A tropical oasis has blossomed inside Manhattan’s concrete jungle. Greenery NYC recently unveiled the city’s largest public living green wall in Korean beauty brand Innisfree’s flagship store in Union Square earlier this month. Lush, textured, and evergreen, the beautiful 1,820-square-foot wall grows nearly 10,000 plants with eleven different tropical varieties that can be enjoyed year-round. Korean beauty brand Innisfree prides itself on its use of natural materials and is no stranger to the use of green walls in their shops. The living wall at this new Union Square location, however, is at a much larger scale than the company typically handles. Measuring 76 feet in length and 24 feet in height, this lush living wall of plants fills up an entire wall and is equipped with a custom-designed irrigation system that minimizes water use and maintenance. Related: The world’s tallest vertical garden lives and breathes in Sydney “Construction is already a difficult process with many moving parts, but when you factor in almost 10,000 living organisms that each need individual care to stay alive during the build out, it almost feels like you’re trying to juggle while walking a tight rope,” said Adam Besheer, Director of Operations at Greenery NYC. “Seeing the finished product is an incredible reward though—we’re excited to work with a company that shares our values, and for the chance to once again introduce the enormous beauty of natural plant life in the city.” Greenery NYC, which creates plant-filled multi-sensory sanctuaries in the city, has also created similar lush green walls and projects for high-profile clients such as Etsy , The Brooklyn Nets, and TED Talks. + Greenery NYC

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Nearly 10,000 plants grow on NYCs largest public indoor green wall

New Oxford Study Reveals the Origins of HIV

October 7, 2014 by  
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A new study published in Science  has traced the origins of the HIV-1 group M pandemic to 1920s Kinshasa, in what is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo. While strains of  HIV are known to have crossed from other primates to humans on a number of occasions, only this particular outbreak has led to a pandemic. Scientists have long wanted to know why this particular strain was able to spread so successfully, when others had petered out. An international team lead by scientists from Oxford University and the University of Leuven reconstructed and examined the genetic history of the virus. This led them to conclude that a “perfect storm” of social factors allowed the virus to break out of Kinshasa in the 1920s and spread around the world. Read the rest of New Oxford Study Reveals the Origins of HIV Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: aids , contagious diseases , Democratic Republic of the Congo , DRC , epidemic , hiv , HIV originated in Kinshasa in 1920 , HIV transmission , Kinshasa , pandemic , sexually transmitted diseases , transmissible diseases , urban development

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CBF’s Brock Environmental Center Will Soon Be the Most Sustainable Building in Virginia

October 7, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of CBF’s Brock Environmental Center Will Soon Be the Most Sustainable Building in Virginia Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Brock Environmental Center , chesapeake bay foundation , Climate Change , Hampton Roads , LEED platinum , Living Building Challenge , net zero , Sustainable Building , virginia beach

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CBF’s Brock Environmental Center Will Soon Be the Most Sustainable Building in Virginia

TGH Architects Gives a LEED Platinum Upgrade to Hupomone Ranch in California

October 7, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of TGH Architects Gives a LEED Platinum Upgrade to Hupomone Ranch in California Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: eco design , green design , Hupomone Ranch , Leed Platinum Farmhouse , passive heating and cooling , Petaluma California , photovoltaic panels , sustainable design , Turnbill Griffin Haesloop Architects

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TGH Architects Gives a LEED Platinum Upgrade to Hupomone Ranch in California

Finnish Company to Begin Testing HIV Vaccine on Patients This Year

January 2, 2014 by  
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Syringe photo via Shutterstock FIT Biotech , a medical technology company based in Finland, plans to begin testing an HIV vaccine on human subjects sometime after the spring of 2014. Hundreds of HIV-positive patients in France and Switzerland will participate in the trials, which are expected to last several years before the company applies to the FDA and its European equivalent the EMA. In previous non-human testing, the vaccine has been shown to stop the progression of the virus and even eliminate it entirely . Read the rest of Finnish Company to Begin Testing HIV Vaccine on Patients This Year Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: AIDS HIV , AIDS vaccine , Finland HIV vaccine , Finnish HIV vaccine , Finnish Medical Technology Firm , FIT Biotech , FIT Biotech AIDS vaccine , FIT Biotech HIV vaccine , HIV medication , HIV prevention , HIV treatment , HIV treatment options , HIV vaccination , HIV Vaccine , vaccine        

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Finnish Company to Begin Testing HIV Vaccine on Patients This Year

Study Finds that Nanoparticles Loaded with Bee Venom Can Kill HIV

March 11, 2013 by  
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Photo via Shutterstock A cure for HIV has eluded scientists since the virus was first discovered in the early 1980s, but researchers at Washington University believe that bee venom could provide a successful treatment. The venom that bees carry contains a toxin called melittin that can penetrate the protective envelope surrounding HIV. The team used nanoparticles carrying melittin to successfully destroy HIV without harming nearby cells, which represents a potentially huge breakthrough in the ongoing effort to find a cure. Read the rest of Study Finds that Nanoparticles Loaded with Bee Venom Can Kill HIV Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: aids , aids cure , bee sting , bee venom , bees , Hepatitis , hiv , HIV cure , HIV virus , honeybees , Medicine , melittin , nanomaterials , nanoparticles

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Study Finds that Nanoparticles Loaded with Bee Venom Can Kill HIV

Vapur Unveils Water Filtering Anti-Bottles That Remove 99.99% of Bacteria

March 11, 2013 by  
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Vapur  introduced several new products at the 2013 International Home + Housewares Show that expand their line of BPA-free “Anti-Bottles” – including a new filtering technology that safely removes 99.99% of bacteria and organic matter (it can make even river water potable). With a collection of fun new colors and super cute DIY customizing kits for kids , Vapur is encouraging the whole family to keep hydrated. Read the rest of Vapur Unveils Water Filtering Anti-Bottles That Remove 99.99% of Bacteria Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “flat pack” , anti-bottle , Eco , filter , graphics , green , housewares , kids , vapur , water bottle , water issues

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