Friday, 9 February 2018

Vinayaka Mission’s Research Foundation joins with Global Institute of Nanotechnology

Vinayaka Mission’s Research Foundation (VMRF) has entered into a MOU with Global Institute of Nanotechnology (GINTEM) founded by Dr Varadan, to collaborate on Brain Machine Interface and to use the expertise of Dr Varadan to train the next generation. Professionals on latest trends in nano technologies. In particular, this collaboration creates a platform to dwell our students and research scholars, in futuristic technologies that can lead to a better quality of health care. The MOU was signed on 9th February 2018.

The global Nano sensors market was valued at 55 million USD in 2016 and will reach $1,472 million by 2021, growing at a CAGR of 93% during the forecast period. The growing demand for sophistication in the healthcare industry is one of the major drivers contributing to the growth of the global nano sensors market. With technological advances in the healthcare industry, the demand for precision diagnostics is increasing. The demand for speedy and precise detection and diagnostics is compelling the adoption of Nano sensors in diagnostic equipments. In 2017, the healthcare segment was the largest end-user segment in the global Nano sensors market.

Dr A S Ganesan, Chancellor – VMRF speaking at the press conference said that “The MOU will provide Academic Collaboration, Research Partnership and Innovative Healthcare for the rural people. This provides a unique opportunity to our students and faculties to visit Prof Vardan’s Laboratories at Penn State University and work closely with his team on nano and wireless technologies in healthcare which are currently unavailable in India. Joint certificate courses with GINTEM and VMRF in field of Nanotechnology and Brain Machine Interface, which would be beneficial for students in field of Medicine, Engineering and Allied Health.”

“This MOU also facilitates joint research collaboration between GINTEM and VMRF especially on remote health care technologies. VMRF will set up Unique Brain Machine Interface Laboratory at AVIT campus for the specialised research in neuro cardiology”

“We further plan to put mobile clinics in Puducherry, Chennai and Salem with Non-invasive advance nano biosensors which will help us to reach out to people in remote areas who are deprived of basic health care. These Mobile clinics will help us make medical technology inclusive and accessible for rural people who do not have access to high end Cardiac and Neuro diagnostics. Low cost technology interface in Neuro Cardiology would be affordable which would help society at large. Health Analytics developed through Innovative Healthcare will be helpful to develop treatment protocols and preventive healthcare in neuro cardiology.”

Dr Vijay Varadan is internationally renowned for his contributions in developing innovative nanotechnology products in engineering and medicine. Professor Varadan is also associated with the Department of Engineering Science and Department of Neurosurgery at Penn State Hershey Medical School. He was formerly the Twenty-First Century Endowed Chair in Nano-and Bio-Technology and Medicine, and Distinguished Professor of Electrical Engineering and Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering (College of Engineering) and Neurosurgery (College of Medicine) at University of Arkansas from 2005 till 2015. He is also the Director of Global Institute of Nanotechnology in Engineering and Medicine (GINTEM).

Dr Vijay Varadan’s research on nanotechnology products for health care over the past many decades has resulted in development of non-invasive techniques for diagnostics and therapy of disorders like Parkinson and Alzheimer. Varadan has developed neurostimulator, wireless micro sensors and systems for sensing and control of Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, glucose in the blood and Alzheimer’s disease. He is also developing both silicon and organic based wireless sensor systems with RFID for human gait analysis and sleep disorders and various neurological disorders.

Dr Varadan has developed an indigenous technology to synthesise fabric embedded sensors to assess multiple health parameters including ECG, body temperature, heart rate and BP, and its wireless transmission using secure protocols to computer or smart devices that can be useful for initiating immediate medical assistance whenever required. This easy to wear fabric will be lifesaving by early real time detection of heart disorders and prompting immediate medical attention. This will have particular relevance for ensuring accessible and inclusive health care in our rural villages.

Dr Varadan’s lab has also developed a wireless brain-machine interface (BMI) platform and established a BMI that can be used to control the movement of a robot by using the extracted features of the EEG signals. The system records and classifies EEG as alpha, beta, delta, and theta waves. The classified brain waves are then used to define the level of attention. The acceleration and deceleration or stopping of the robot is controlled based on the attention level of the wearer. In addition, the left and right movements of eye ball control the direction of the robot. A brain machine interface (BMI) or Brain Computer Interface (BCI) is a communication system that translates human's thought into signals to control devices such as a computer application or a neuroprosthesis. A BMI enables the brain to communicate with the external world by deciphering the brain activity.

Hence, the assistive devices or systems using a BMI improve quality of life of differently abled persons. In addition, a BMI has been proposed to replace humans with robots in the performance of dangerous tasks like explosives handling/diffusing, hazardous materials handling, fire fighting etc. Earlier researches demonstrated the feasibility of BMI with an invasive method. While an invasive BMI can use good quality of brain signals, it is expensive and the implanting surgery may lead to undesirable side effects. Dr Varadan has developed non-invasive, cost effective and accessible technologies to ensure that innovative health care can be deployed for the welfare of large scale


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