Author: Jiqing Hansen

Having worked passionately for 15+ years in Medicine, I felt that I yearned to do something a little bit different, something that satisfies my curiosity and creativity, maybe something that helps to inform me and others what our world will look like in the future. That's when I took on the challenge of being the editor & expert relationship manager at Supertrends. I love the fact that I can still be in touch with my academic background when I am trying to understand and reach out to the experts in the most exciting fields. I also love the diverse and enthusiastic team at Supertrends. The best of all, I get to have a peek into the future, and I am at the position of helping many others to get the opportunity to look into the future.

Artificial Intelligence becomes an essential part of future healthcare

In many developed countries, healthcare has become an unsustainable business in recent years, partly due to the aging population and prevalence of chronic diseases. In the US, healthcare spending grew 4.6 percent in 2019 alone, amounting to US$3.8 trillion, or 18 percent of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). However, this increase in spending did not translate into better patient care, nor has it reduced resource scarcity and imbalance in the healthcare industry. How can we transform the healthcare sector to make it more efficient and sustainable? Artificial intelligence (AI) will play...

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Aquaporins

Aquaporins: Purifying Water with Nature’s Own Filter

While many human activities affect the environment in negative ways, nature’s solutions often are more efficient and sustainable. How do plants and animals purify water? What can we learn from them about filtration? With these questions in mind, Supertrends talked to two executives from Aquaporin, a water tech company delivering innovative technology based on nature’s own water filter.    Aquaporins: the truly natural water filters The cells in Aquaporins are channel proteins that facilitate the transport of water across cells. Through aquaporins, cells in plants, animals, and...

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Sepsis patients

Four Supertrends Experts Share Their Insights on Sepsis

On 13 September 2021, World Sepsis Day will be observed for the tenth time. Sepsis, a disorder that is caused by infections, can lead to limb amputations and deaths in a matter of days. The condition kills at least 11 million people every year globally. However, the condition is still not well known, with only from 7 to 50 percent of respondents being familiar with the term, and many having an incorrect understanding of the condition. Supertrends asked four experts to comment on current sepsis-related trends and challenges.  COVID-19 and viral sepsis Traditionally, bacterial infections...

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Robots Become Reliable Assistants for Healthcare Professionals and Patients

Going in for surgery in 2030 could look like this: the patient is greeted by a smiling robot receptionist and asked to fill in personal information. Then the patient is led to a wardroom that has been disinfected by a service robot. On the day of surgery, the surgeon is in the operation room; but rather than standing next to the patient, he sits at a console, from where he can view the operation field and control his surgical-assistance robot to perform the surgery through a tiny incision.  This vision of the future may not be too far off the mark. Already today, different robots are taking...

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anti aging, longevity

Defy Aging and Stay Healthy for 100 Years

Although stories revolving around long life and eternal youth have always been told throughout human history, most of us accept aging as a completely natural process. But if it is possible for some species, such as a certain type of jellyfish, to be biologically “immortal”, why not humans? As our understanding of biological processes improve, scientists have started to take on aging from a whole different viewpoint. The Seven Revolutions in Healthcare That Will Impact Your Life – Part 5 Read Part 4 – mRNA Vaccines Mark a New Era in Medicine How long can we live? Only...

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mRNA vaccine

mRNA Vaccines Mark a New Era in Medicine

Since the beginning of this century, the world has witnessed SARS in China, H1N1 (swine flu) in Mexico and the US, MERS in the Middle East, Ebola in West Africa, Zika across the American continent, and for the last one and half years, COVID-19 as a global pandemic. mRNA therapeutics may become our new weapons against viral infections and many other health issues. The Seven Revolutions in Healthcare That Will Impact Your Life – Part 4 Read part 3 – The Human Brain, the Least Understood and Most Exciting Organ The revolutionary mRNA vaccine “We are witnessing the...

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The World’s First 3D-Printed Metal Bridge Opens in Amsterdam

The world’s first 3D-printed metal bridge opened to the public on 15 July 2021. The futuristic design of the smart bridge adds a modernist flair to one of the oldest canals in Amsterdam’s Red Light District. (Head image credit: Adriaan de Groot) The challenge of a 3D-printed metal bridge A 3D-printed metal bridge being installed in central Amsterdam (Image credit: Merlin Moritz) Metal 3D printing has gained massive interest in recent years. It enables manufacturers to advance more quickly from the design to the final product and facilitates a more flexible and complex design approach....

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The Human Brain, the Least Understood and Most Exciting Organ

Paul survived a car crash but was paralyzed because of a spinal cord injury. In the hospital, doctors inserted an implant into his brain and another implant to the end of his spine. The two implants were connected and formed a channel to communicate the brain signals to the lower part of the spinal cord that is still functional. Paul was able to walk again. The above is an imagined story, but it may well happen in the future. Neuroscientists and entrepreneurs like Elon Musk are experimenting with new approaches to repair damaged neural connections currently considered untreatable. The...

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3D Printing is a Game-Changer in Surgery

In 2016, a nine-month-old baby boy in China was found to have a rare heart defect. He was taken to the hospital in critical condition. Without surgery, doctors estimated that he had only a 20 percent chance of surviving to his first birthday. However, the complexity of the surgery was a risk factor that concerned his doctor. The doctor 3D-printed a full-size model of his tiny heart for the surgery pre-planning. The baby recovered after the surgery and is expected to live with little to no lasting ill effects. The Seven Revolutions in Healthcare That Will Impact Your Life – Part 2 Healthcare,...

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Genomics Spells the End of ‘One Size Fits All’ Medicine

The same disease can cause different symptoms in different people. The same drug affects everyone differently.  COVID-19 has reminded us once again that medicine is not “one size fits all”.  Breakthroughs in genomics have made it possible to tailor prevention, diagnosis, and treatment to individual levels.  The Seven Revolutions in Healthcare That Will Impact Your Life – Part 1 Within five to ten years, healthcare as we know it may be changed radically. Disruptive technologies such as genomics, artificial intelligence, or 3D printing have already started to have an...

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Meat, Culture, and Cultured Meat: Supertrends Surveys Consumer Attitudes Toward Cell-Based Meat

The young industry of cultured meat has seen many technological, funding, and regulatory breakthroughs in 2020. Despite the rapid growth, some questions remain to be answered: Will consumers eat cultured meat? Will cultured meat face negative consumer attitudes, similar to genetically modified food?   Cultured meat, or cultivated meat, is meat produced in a laboratory environment from animal cells. 2020 has been a record-breaking year for this young industry. Investment in this sector soared to US$350 million; fetal bovine serum (FBS)-free media has been developed and commercially produced;...

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The First Cultivated Seafood Company from Africa

Cultured seafood, synthetically grown from fish or crustacean cells in a bioreactor, is being touted as one of the next major developments in the food industry. Most of the small but growing number of companies in the sector of cultured meat are based in the US, Europe, and Asia. However, the cutting-edge technology is also gaining a foothold on the African continent. Supertrends spoke to Marica Quarsingh, the CEO of Africa’s first cultured seafood company. In 2020, Marica Quarsingh’s promising energy efficiency project was brought to a halt by the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead of looking backward,...

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Aging

When Does Your Brain Start Aging?

Some people think the brain aging starts after 65. The onset of Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of age-related dementia that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills, usually occurs after age 65. However, decades of diligent work on this disorder have not resulted in any effective treatment. Could it be that we diagnose and treat brain aging too late? Do our brains begin to age long before any visible signs can be detected? A recent study found that people in middle age, who have older biological age, can have signs of advanced brain aging, diminished sensory-motor functions,...

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tablet screen showing a digital gut model

Inside the World of the Gut Microbiome

For the gut microbiome, which includes countless bacteria, viruses, and fungi living in our intestines, the abdomen constitutes a complete ecosystem. The gut microbiome has attracted a great deal of attention in scientific research in recent years. Diseases such as cancer, autoimmune disorders, and autism have been linked to the gut microbiome. Some companies see big opportunities in this robust field. In recent years researchers have made exciting discoveries that established a link between the gut microbiome and several diseases including cancer, autoimmune disorders, and autism. A young...

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