Purdue University launches institute for advanced manufacturing of pharmaceuticals

Thanks to a donation from pharma industry veteran William D. Young, Purdue University has announced plans to launch a new institute dedicated to furthering pharmaceutical manufacturing to reduce costs and bolster access to new biotech drugs.

The William D. Young Institute for Advanced Manufacturing of Pharmaceuticals is named after the eponymous chemical engineer, who graduated from Purdue in 1966. Yong went on to become the chief operating officer of Genentech from 1980 to 1999. Young is now a senior advisor to Blackstone Life Sciences (South San Francisco and Cambridge, Massachusetts).

“We’re honored to receive this gift from a man with a global reputation as a talented chemical engineer who built an outstanding technical and management record in pharmaceutical and biotech manufacturing,” said Purdue President Mitch Daniels in a statement. “Everyone in pharma knows that having Bill Young’s name on the sign means we will be working to the highest standards and…

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Purdue researchers tout tuberculosis vaccine development strategy

Dr. Mittal conducts research on the potential tuberculosis vaccine. [Image from Suresh Mittal/Purdue University]

Researchers at Purdue University and Houston Methodist Research Institute are touting a novel strategy for developing a tuberculosis (TB) vaccine.

Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) is widely used as a vaccine against TB, but the researchers say it has a variable protection against neonatal and adult pulmonary TB, with protection ranging from 0% to 80% among infants. Despite routine vaccinations for children, mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) continues to disseminate into brain and tuberculosis meningitis.

The novel approach developed by the researchers incorporates autophagy-mediated antigen presentation, which initiates an enhanced T cell response, according to a news release. Houston Methodist Research Institute professor of pathology and genomic medicine Chinnaswamy Jagannath, collaborating w…

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Smart clothes powered by AI could monitor health

The fingertips of a wireless voltage detection glove illuminates when the wearer’s hand approaches a live cable. (Purdue University photo/Rebecca McElhoe)

Engineers at Purdue University are touting a method for turning cloth items into battery-free, wearable and wireless “smart clothes.”

The engineers at the West Lafayette, Ind.-based university developed a new spray/sewing method designed to transform any conventional cloth item into these smart clothes that can also be cleaned in the washing machine like normal clothing.

“By spray-coating smart clothes with highly hydrophobic molecules, we are able to render them repellent to water, oil and mud,” Purdue School of Industrial Engineering/Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering assistant professor Ramses Martinez said in a news release. “These smart clothes are almost impossible to stain and can be used underwater and was…

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This wearable patch could treat skin cancers

[Image from Purdue University]

Researchers at Purdue University have developed a wearable patch that could bring an improved treatment experience to people with melanoma.

Conventional melanoma therapies leave patients suffering from the toxicity and side effects of repeated treatments because of aggressive and the recurrent nature of melanoma cells, according to the researchers.

The Purdue University wearable patch features a gradual slow dissolution of silicon nanoneedles to allow for long-lasting and sustainable delivery of cancer therapeutics.

“We developed a novel wearable patch with fully miniaturized needles, enabling unobtrusive drug delivery through the skin for the management of skin cancers,” Chi Hwan Lee, a Purdue assistant professor of biomedical engineering and mechanical engineering, said in a news release. “Uniquely, this patch is fully dissolvable by body fluids in a programmable…

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New imaging tech allows visualization of nanoscale structures

This image shows a 3D super-resolution reconstruction of dendrites in primary visual cortex.

Since Robert Hooke’s first description of a cell in Micrographia 350 years ago, microscopy has played an important role in understanding the rules of life.

However, the smallest resolvable feature, the resolution, is restricted by the wave nature of light. This century-old barrier has restricted understanding of cellular functions, interactions and dynamics, particularly at the sub-micron to nanometer scale.

Super-resolution fluorescence microscopy overcomes this fundamental limit, offering up to tenfold improvement in resolution, and allows scientists to visualize the inner workings of cells and biomolecules at unprecedented spatial resolution.

Such resolving capability is impeded, however, when observing inside whole-cell or tissue specimens, such as the ones often analyzed during the studies of the …

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