Tag Archives: Congenital disorder

Google’s New Project: A Steady Spoon


Google’s New Project: A Steady Spoon

Among Google’s latest attempts at innovation is a spoon that allows people with essential tremors and Parkinson’s disease to eat without spilling. The project was begun by a small startup that was acquired by Google earlier this year. Equipped with sensors that detect shaking, the spoon uses algorithms to keep it steady, reducing shaking by an average of 76 percent, according to the results of clinical trials. Doctors say the device has allowed some patients to eat independently who otherwise would have to be fed. More… Discuss

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“Bubble Boys” Lose Bubbles Thanks to Gene Therapy


“Bubble Boys” Lose Bubbles Thanks to Gene Therapy

Historically, patients with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), an often fatal congenital disorder in which the cells involved in immune responses fail to work properly, have been kept in isolation in a sterile environment to protect them from infection. Currently, the only long-term treatment for so-called bubble boy disease is a bone marrow transplant, but an experimental gene therapy is showing promise for boys with X-linked SCID. Of the nine babies given the treatment, six developed immune systems capable of fighting off infection. More… Discuss

Today’s Birthday: VIVIEN THEODORE THOMAS (1910)


Vivien Theodore Thomas (1910)

When the Great Depression hit, Thomas was forced to set aside his dreams of becoming a doctor and instead found work as a laboratory assistant to American surgeon Alfred Blalock. He spent the next 34 years working with Blalock and was instrumental in developing a pioneering surgical treatment for tetralogy of Fallot, a congenital heart malformation. Despite his groundbreaking work, he went unrecognized for many years due to racial prejudices. What honorary degree was conferred upon him in 1976? More… Discuss