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Charles Kao

Origem: Wikipédia, a enciclopédia livre.Saltar para a navegaçãoSaltar para a pesquisa

Charles Kao 
 
Nascimento4 de novembro de 1933
Xangai
Morte23 de setembro de 2018 (84 anos)
Hong Kong
ResidênciaHong KongXangaiLondresMountain View
NacionalidadeBritânicoamericano
CidadaniaRepública da ChinaReino UnidoEstados UnidosHong Kong britânico
EtniaHans
Alma materUniversity College London (PhD 1965)
Ocupaçãofísicoengenheiro, acadêmico, inventor, empresário
PrêmiosMedalha Stuart Ballantine (1977), Prêmio Memorial Morris N. Liebmann IEEE (1978), Medalha Alexander Graham Bell IEEE (1985), Prêmio Marconi (1985), Medalha Faraday (1989), Medalha de Ouro SPIE (1992), Medalha Príncipe Filipe (1996), Prêmio Japão (1996), Prêmio Charles Stark Draper (1999),  Nobel de Física (2009)
EmpregadorUniversidade YaleImperial College LondonQueen Mary, Universidade de LondresChinese University
Causa da mortemal de Alzheimer
Orientador(es)Harold Barlow
InstituiçõesUniversidade Chinesa de Hong KongITT CorporationStandard Telephones and Cables
Campo(s)Física
[edite no Wikidata]

Charles Kuen KaoKBE (Xangai4 de novembro de 1933 – Hong Kong23 de setembro de 2018[1]) foi um físico anglo-americano nascido na China.[2]

Foi um dos pioneiros na óptica de fibras de vidro, trabalho pelo qual recebeu o Nobel de Física de 2009.

Índice

Biografia[editar | editar código-fonte]

Estudou na Inglaterra, com doutorado em 1965 no Imperial College London. Em seguida trabalhou no Standard Telecommunication Laboratories da International Telephone and Telegraph (ITT), em Harlow, onde foi diretor de engenharia. Lá trabalhou com George Hockham na área de telecomunicação via fibras de vidro, transmitindo pela primeira vez dados em forma de sinais de luz. Constatou que a maior causa de perda de informação não ocorre por problemas eletrônicos, mas sim por impurezas nas fibras de vidro.[3]

Foi posteriormente vice-reitor da Universidade Chinesa de Hong Kong, aposentando-se em 1996.

Referências

  1.  Hong Kong mourns passing of Nobel Prize winner and father of fiber optics, Charles Kao, 84
  2.  Zhen Cai (9 de dezembro de 2012). «The Nobel Prize and China’s long history» (em inglês). gbtimes.com. Consultado em 15 de junho de 2016
  3.  C. K. Kao e G. A. Hockham: Dielectric-fibre surface waveguides for optical frequencies. In: Proceedings IEE 113, 1966, pag. 1151–1158.

Ver também[editar | editar código-fonte]

Ligações externas[editar | editar código-fonte]

Precedido por
Yoichiro NambuMakoto Kobayashi e Toshihide Masukawa
Nobel de Física
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[Expandir]vdePrêmio Marconi
[Expandir]vdeMedalha Faraday (1922 — 2013)
[Expandir]vdePrêmio Japão
[Expandir]vdeNobel de Física
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Charles K. Kao

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The Honourable Sir
Charles K. Kao
GBM KBE FRS FREng
Charles K. Kao receiving an honorary degree from Princeton University in 2004
Native name高錕
BornCharles Kuen Kao
4 November 1933
ShanghaiRepublic of China[1]
Died23 September 2018 (aged 84)
Sha TinHong Kong
ResidenceRepublic of China (1933–1948)
Hong Kong (1949–2018)[2]
United Kingdom (1952–1970)
United States
CitizenshipUnited States
United Kingdom[1]
Alma materUniversity College London[3] (PhD 1965, issued by University of London[1])
Woolwich Polytechnic (BSc 1957, issued by University of London[citation needed])
Known forFibre optics
Fibre-optic communication
AwardsStuart Ballantine Medal (1977)IEEE Morris N. Liebmann Memorial Award (1978)IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal (1985)Marconi Prize (1985)C&C Prize (1987)Faraday Medal (1989)James C. McGroddy Prize for New Materials (1989)FREng[4] (1989)SPIE Gold Medal (1992)CBE (1992)Prince Philip Medal (1996)Japan Prize (1996)3463 Kaokuen (1996)FRS (1997)[5]Charles Stark Draper Prize (1999)Asian of the Century (1999)Nobel Prize in Physics (2009)Grand Bauhinia Medal (2010)KBE (2010)
Scientific career
FieldsPhysics
InstitutionsChinese University of Hong Kong
ITT Corporation
Yale University
Standard Telephones and Cables
Doctoral advisorHarold Barlow

This is a Chinese name; the family name is Kao.

Charles K. Kao
Traditional Chinese
Simplified Chinese高锟
showTranscriptions

Sir Charles Kuen Kao GBM KBE FRS FREng[6][7][8][9][10] (4 November 1933 – 23 September 2018) was a physicist and electrical engineer who pioneered the development and use of fibre optics in telecommunications. In the 1960s, Kao created various methods to combine glass fibres with lasers in order to transmit digital data, which laid the groundwork for the evolution of the Internet.

Known as the “Godfather of Broadband”,[11] the “Father of Fiber Optics”,[12][13][14][15][16] and the “Father of Fiber Optic Communications”,[17][18] Kao was awarded the 2009 Nobel Prize in Physics for “groundbreaking achievements concerning the transmission of light in fibers for optical communication”.[19]

Born in Shanghai, Kao was a permanent resident of Hong Kong[20] and held citizenships in the United Kingdom and the United States.[1]

Contents

Early life and education[edit]

Charles Kao was born in Shanghai, China in 1933,[21]:1 and his ancestral home is in nearby Jinshan,[21]:13 at that time a separate administrative area.[22][23] He studied Chinese classics at home with his brother, under a tutor.[2][21]:41 He also studied English and French at the Shanghai World School (上海世界學校) in the Shanghai French Concession[24] which was founded by a number of progressive Chinese educators including Cai Yuanpei.[25]

Kao’s family moved to Taiwan and then British Hong Kong in 1948[21]:1[26] where he completed his secondary education (Hong Kong School Certificate Examination, a predecessor of HKCEE[27])[28] at St. Joseph’s College in 1952. He did his undergraduate studies in electrical engineering at Woolwich Polytechnic (now the University of Greenwich),[29] obtaining his Bachelor of Engineering degree.[21]:1[non-primary source needed]

He then pursued research and received his PhD in electrical engineering in 1965 from University of London, under Professor Harold Barlow of University College London as an external student while working at Standard Telecommunication Laboratories (STL) in Harlow, England, the research centre of Standard Telephones and Cables.[3] It is there that Kao did his first groundbreaking work as an engineer and researcher working alongside George Hockham under the supervision of Alec Reeves.[citation needed]

Ancestry and family[edit]

Kao’s father Kao Chun-Hsiang [zh] (高君湘)[21]:13 was a lawyer who obtained his Juris Doctor from the University of Michigan Law School in 1925.[30] He was a professor at Soochow University (then in Shanghai) Comparative Law School of China.[31][32]

His grandfather Gao Xie was a scholar, poet, artist,[2] and a leading figure of the South Society during the late Qing Dynasty.[33] Several writers including Gao XuYao Guang [zh] (姚光), and Gao Zeng [zh] (高增) were also Gao’s close relatives.[citation needed]

His father’s cousin was astronomer Kao Ping-tse[2][34] (Kao crater is named after him[35]). Kao’s younger brother Timothy Wu Kao (高鋙) is a civil engineer and Professor Emeritus at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. His research is in hydrodynamics.[36]

Kao met his future wife Gwen May-Wan Kao (née Wong; 黃美芸) in London after graduation, when they worked together as engineers at Standard Telephones and Cables.[21]:23[37][unreliable source?] She is British Chinese.[21]:17 They were married in 1959 in London,[21]:15–17[38] and had a son and a daughter,[38] both of whom reside and work in Silicon Valley, California.[11][37][39][unreliable source?] According to Kao’s autobiography, Kao was a Catholic who attended Catholic Church while his wife attended Anglican Communion.[21]:14–15

Academic career[edit]

Fibre optics and communications[edit]

A bundle of silica glass fibres for optical communication, which are the de facto worldwide standard. Kao also first publicly suggested that silica glass of high purity is an ideal material for long range optical communication.[40]

In the 1960s at Standard Telecommunication Laboratories (STL) based in Harlow, Essex, Kao and his co-workers did their pioneering work in the realisation of fibre optics as a telecommunications medium, by demonstrating that the high-loss of existing fibre optics arose from impurities in the glass, rather than from an underlying problem with the technology itself.[41]

In 1963, when Kao first joined the optical communications research team he made notes summarising the background[42] situation and available technology at the time, and identifying the key individuals[42] involved. Initially Kao worked in the team of Antoni E. Karbowiak (Toni Karbowiak), who was working under Alec Reeves to study optical waveguides for communications. Kao’s task was to investigate fibre attenuation, for which he collected samples from different fibre manufacturers and also investigated the properties of bulk glasses carefully. Kao’s study primarily convinced himself that the impurities in material caused the high light losses of those fibres.[43] Later that year, Kao was appointed head of the electro-optics research group at STL.[44] He took over the optical communication program of STL in December 1964, because his supervisor, Karbowiak, left to take the Chair in Communications in the School of Electrical Engineering at the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Sydney, Australia.[45]

Although Kao succeeded Karbowiak as manager of optical communications research, he immediately decided to abandon Karbowiak’s plan (thin-film waveguide) and overall change research direction with his colleague George Hockham.[43][45] They not only considered optical physics but also the material properties. The results were first presented by Kao to the IEE in January 1966 in London, and further published in July with George Hockham (1964–1965 worked with Kao).[46][a] This study first theorized and proposed to use glass fibres to implement optical communication, the ideas (especially structural features and materials) described are largely the basis of today’s optical fibre communications.[citation needed]

In 1965,[44][47][b] Kao with Hockham concluded that the fundamental limitation for glass light attenuation is below 20 dB/km (decibels per kilometer, is a measure of the attenuation of a signal over a distance), which is a key threshold value for optical communications.[48] However, at the time of this determination, optical fibres commonly exhibited light loss as high as 1,000 dB/km and even more. This conclusion opened the intense race to find low-loss materials and suitable fibres for reaching such criteria.[citation needed]

Kao, together with his new team (members including T. W. Davies, M. W. Jones, and C. R. Wright), pursued this goal by testing various materials. They precisely measured the attenuation of light with different wavelengths in glasses and other materials. During this period, Kao pointed out that the high purity of fused silica (SiO2) made it an ideal candidate for optical communication. Kao also stated that the impurity of glass material is the main cause for the dramatic decay of light transmission inside glass fibre, rather than fundamental physical effects such as scattering as many physicists thought at that time, and such impurity could be removed. This led to a worldwide study and production of high-purity glass fibres.[49] When Kao first proposed that such glass fibre could be used for long-distance information transfer and could replace copper wires which were used for telecommunication during that era, his ideas were widely disbelieved; later people realized that Kao’s ideas revolutionized the whole communication technology and industry.[50]

He also played a leading role in the early stage of engineering and commercial realization of optical communication.[51] In spring 1966, Kao traveled to the U.S. but failed to interest Bell Labs, which was a competitor of STL in communication technology at that time.[52] He subsequently traveled to Japan and gained support.[52] Kao visited many glass and polymer factories, discussed with various people including engineers, scientists, businessmen about the techniques and improvement of glass fiber manufacture. In 1969, Kao with M. W. Jones measured the intrinsic loss of bulk-fused silica at 4 dB/km, which is the first evidence of ultra-transparent glass. Bell Labs started considering fibre optics seriously.[52]

Kao developed important techniques and configurations for glass fibre waveguides, and contributed to the development of different fibre types and system devices which met both civil and military[c] application requirements, and peripheral supporting systems for optical fiber communication.[51] In mid-1970s, he did seminal work on glass fiber fatigue strength.[51] When named the first ITT Executive Scientist, Kao launched the “Terabit Technology” program in addressing the high frequency limits of signal processing, so Kao is also known as the “Father of the Terabit Technology Concept”.[51][53] Kao has published more than 100 papers and was granted over 30 patents,[51] including the water-resistant high-strength fibers (with M. S. Maklad).[54]

At an early stage of developing optic fibres, Kao already strongly preferred single mode for long-distance optical communication, instead of using multi-mode systems. His vision later was followed and now is applied almost exclusively.[49][55] Kao was also a visionary of modern submarine communications cables and largely promoted this idea. He predicted in 1983 that world’s seas would be littered with fibre optics, five years ahead of the time that such a trans-oceanic fibre-optic cable first became serviceable.[56]

Ali Javan‘s introduction of a steady helium–neon laser and Kao’s discovery of fibre light-loss properties now are recognized as the two essential milestones for the development of fiber-optic communications.[45]

Later work[edit]

Kao joined the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) in 1970 to found the Department of Electronics, which later became the Department of Electronic Engineering. During this period, Kao was the reader and then the chair Professor of Electronics at CUHK; he built up both undergraduate and graduate study programmes of electronics and oversaw the graduation of his first students. Under his leadership, the School of Education and other new research institutes were established. He returned to ITT Corporation in 1974 (the parent corporation of STC at that time) in the United States and worked in Roanoke, Virginia, first as Chief Scientist and later as Director of Engineering. In 1982, he became the first ITT Executive Scientist and was stationed mainly at the Advanced Technology Center in Connecticut.[15] While there, he served as an adjunct professor and Fellow of Trumbull College at Yale University. In 1985, Kao spent one year in West Germany, at the SEL Research Centre. In 1986, Kao was the Corporate Director of Research at ITT.

He was one of the earliest to study the environmental effects of land reclamation in Hong Kong, and presented one of his first related studies at the conference of the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU) in Edinburgh in 1972.[57]

Kao was the vice-chancellor of the Chinese University of Hong Kong from 1987 to 1996.[58] From 1991, Kao was an Independent Non-Executive Director and a member of the Audit Committee of the Varitronix International Limited in Hong Kong.[59][60] From 1993 to 1994, he was the President of the Association of Southeast Asian Institutions of Higher Learning (ASAIHL).[61] In 1996, Kao donated to Yale University, and the Charles Kao Fund Research Grants was established to support Yale’s studies, research and creative projects in Asia.[62] The fund currently is managed by Yale University Councils on East Asian and Southeast Asian Studies.[63] After his retirement from CUHK in 1996, Kao spent his six-month sabbatical leave at the Imperial College London Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering; from 1997 to 2002, he also served as visiting professor in the same department.[64]

Kao was chairman and member of the Energy Advisory Committee (EAC) of Hong Kong for two years, and retired from the position on July 15, 2000.[65][66] Kao was a Member of the Council of Advisors on Innovation and Technology of Hong Kong, appointed on April 20, 2000.[67] In 2000, Kao co-founded the Independent Schools Foundation Academy, which is located in Cyberport, Hong Kong.[68] He was its founding Chairman in 2000, and stepped down from the Board of the ISF in December 2008.[68] Kao was the keynote speaker at IEEE GLOBECOM 2002 in Taipei, Taiwan.[69] In 2003, Kao was named a Chair Professor by special appointment at the Electronics Institute of the College of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, National Taiwan University.[69] Kao then worked as the chairman and CEO of Transtech Services Ltd., a telecommunication consultancy in Hong Kong. He was the founder, chairman and CEO of ITX Services Limited. From 2003 to January 30, 2009, Kao was an independent non-executive director and member of the audit committee of Next Media.[70][71]

Honours and awards[edit]

Kao received numerous honours and awards, including the Nobel Prize in Physics.

Honours[edit]

Society and academy recognition[edit]

Honorary degrees[edit]

Alexander Graham Bell, pioneer of telecommunication and an alumnus of University College London (UCL), was awarded the first U.S. patent for telephone in 1876. After 90 years in 1966, Kao and Hockham published their groundbreaking article in fiber-optic communication. Kao is also an alumnus of UCL, and was awarded the prestigious Alexander Graham Bell Medal of IEEE in 1985. Kao was awarded an honorary doctorate by UCL in 2010.

Awards[edit]

Guglielmo Marconi, pioneer of wireless telecommunication, was awarded half of the 1909 Nobel Prize in Physics. In 2009, the century anniversary of Marconi’s Nobel, Kao was awarded half of the same prize for his pioneer work on optical fibre which has “rewired the world”. Kao was also awarded the Marconi Prize in 1985, and is a Fellow of the Marconi Society.

Kao donated most of his prize medals to the Chinese University of Hong Kong.[72]

Namesakes[edit]

The landmark auditorium in the Hong Kong Science Park has been named after Kao since December 30, 2009.

Others[edit]

Later life and death[edit]

Kao’s international travels led him to opine that he belonged to the world instead of any country.[134][135] An open letter published by Kao and his wife in 2010 later clarified that “Charles studied in Hong Kong for his high schooling, he has taught here, he was the Vice-Chancellor of CUHK and retired here too. So he is a Hong Kong belonger.”[136]

Pottery making, a traditional Chinese handiwork, was a hobby of Kao’s. Kao also enjoyed reading Wuxia novels.[137]

On October 6, 2009, when Kao was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for his contributions to the study of the transmission of light in optical fibres and for fibre communication,[138] he said, “I am absolutely speechless and never expected such an honour”.[18][139] Kao’s wife Gwen told the press that the prize will primarily be used for Charles’s medical expenses,[140] after paying tax to the US government. In 2010 Charles and Gwen Kao founded the Charles K. Kao Foundation for Alzheimer’s Disease to raise public awareness about the disease and provide support for the patients.

Kao suffered from Alzheimer’s disease from early 2004 and had speech difficulty, but had no problem recognising people or addresses.[141] Kao’s father also suffered from the same disease. Beginning in 2008, he resided in Mountain View, California, United States, where he moved from Hong Kong in order to live near his children and grandchild.[11]

In 2016, Kao lost the ability to maintain his balance. At the end-stage of his dementia he was cared for by his wife and intended not to be kept alive with life support or have CPR performed on him.[142] Kao died at Bradbury Hospice in Hong Kong on 23 September 2018 at the age of 84.[143][144][145][146]

Notes[edit]

^ a: Kao’s major task was to investigate light-loss properties in materials of optic fibers, and determine whether they could be removed or not. Hockham’s was investigating light-loss due to discontinuities and curvature of fibre.
^ b: Some sources show around 1964,[147][148] for example, “By 1964, a critical and theoretical specification was identified by Dr. Charles K. Kao for long-range communication devices, the 10 or 20 dB of light loss per kilometer standard.” from Cisco Press.[147]
^ c: In 1980, Kao was awarded the Gold Medal from American Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association, “for contribution to the application of optical fiber technology to military communications“.[51]
^ d: In the United States National Academy of Engineering Membership Website, Kao’s country is indicated as People’s Republic of China.[82]
^ e: OFC/NFOEC – Optical Fiber Communication Conference and Exposition/National Fiber Optic Engineers Conference[127]

References[edit]

  1. Jump up to:a b c d The Nobel Prize in Physics 2009 – Press Release. Nobel Foundation. October 6, 2009. Retrieved October 8, 2009.
  2. Jump up to:a b c d 范彦萍 (October 10, 2009). 诺贝尔得主高锟的堂哥回忆:他兒时国学功底很好 [Interview of Kao’s cousin]. Youth Daily (in Chinese). Shanghai. Retrieved October 9, 2009 – via eastday.com.
  3. Jump up to:a b “Prof Charles K. Kao”. Department of Electronic & Electrical Engineering. University College London. September 24, 2018. Archived from the original on September 14, 2010. Retrieved September 27, 2018.
  4. Jump up to:a b c “List of Fellows”.
  5. Jump up to:a b “Fellows of the Royal Society”. London: Royal Society. Archived from the original on March 16, 2015.
  6. ^ Charles K. Kao was elected in 1990 as a member of National Academy of Engineering in Electronics, Communication & Information Systems Engineering for pioneering and sustained accomplishments towards the theoretical and practical realization of optical fibre communication systems.
  7. Jump up to:a b “306 people to receive honours”. The Government of Hong Kong SAR. July 1, 2010. Retrieved July 1, 2010.[dead link]
  8. Jump up to:a b “2010 Queen’s Birthday Honours List” (PDF). The London Gazette. June 12, 2010. Supplement No.1 B23. Retrieved June 12,2010.
  9. ^ “- Royal Society”.
  10. ^ “The Fellowship – List of Fellows”. Raeng.org.uk. Archived from the original on June 12, 2011. Retrieved October 26, 2009.
  11. Jump up to:a b c Mesher, Kelsey (October 15, 2009). “The legacy of Charles Kao”Mountain View Voice. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
  12. ^ dpa (October 6, 2009). “PROFILE: Charles Kao: ‘father of fibre optics,’ Nobel winner”. Earthtimes. Retrieved November 30,2009.
  13. ^ Record control number (RCN):31331 (October 7, 2009). “‘Father of Fibre Optics’ and digital photography pioneers share Nobel Prize in Physics”Europa (web portal). Archived from the original(cfm) on January 25, 2008. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
  14. ^ Bob Brown (Network World) (October 7, 2009). “Father of fiber-optics snags share of Nobel Physics Prize”. cio.com.au. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
  15. Jump up to:a b “The father of optical fiber – Narinder Singh Kapany/Prof. C. K. Kao” (in Chinese and English). networkchinese.com. Retrieved October 8, 2009.
  16. Jump up to:a b Erickson, Jim; Chung, Yulanda (December 10, 1999). “Asian of the Century, Charles K. Kao”Asiaweek. Archived from the original on July 21, 2002. Retrieved December 24, 2009.
  17. ^ “Prof. Charles K Kao speaks on the impact of IT in Hong Kong”. The Open University of Hong Kong. January 2000. Retrieved December 24, 2009.
  18. Jump up to:a b Editor: Zhang Pengfei (October 7, 2009). “Nobel Prize winner Charles Kao says never expected such honor” (shtml). CCTV. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
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Monographs[edit]

  • Optical fiber technology; by Charles K. Kao. IEEE Press, New York, USA; 1981.
  • Optical Fiber Technology, II; by Charles K. Kao. IEEE Press, New York, USA; 1981, 343 pages. ISBN 0-471-09169-3 ISBN 978-0-471-09169-1.
  • Optical Fiber Systems: Technology, Design, and Applications; by Charles K. Kao. McGraw-Hill, USA; 1982; 204 pages. ISBN 0-07-033277-0 ISBN 978-0-07-033277-5.
  • Optical fibre (IEE materials & devices series, Volume 6); by Charles K. Kao. Palgrave Macmillan on behalf of IEEE; 1988; University of Michigan; 158 pages. ISBN 0-86341-125-8 ISBN 978-0-86341-125-0
  • A Choice Fulfilled: the Business of High Technology; by Charles K. Kao. The Chinese University Press/ Palgrave Macmillan; 1991, 203 pages. ISBN 962-201-521-2 ISBN 978-962-201-521-0
  • Tackling the Millennium Bug Together: Public Conferences; by Charles K. Kao. Central Policy Unit, Hong Kong; 48 pages, 1998.
  • Technology Road Maps for Hong Kong: a Preliminary Study; by Charles K. Kao. Office of Industrial and Business Development, The Chinese University of Hong Kong; 126 pages, 1990.
  • Nonlinear Photonics: Nonlinearities in Optics, Optoelectronics and Fiber Communications; by Yili Guo, Kin S. Chiang, E. Herbert Li, and Charles K. Kao. The Chinese University Press, Hong Kong; 2002, 600 pages.

Further reading[edit]

  • Kao, Charles (1982). Optical Fibre Systems: Technology, Design and Application. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Inc., US. ISBN 978-0070332775.
  • Hecht, Jeff (1999). City of Light, The Story of Fiber Optics. New York, NY: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-510818-7.
  • Kao, K. C.; Hockham, G. A. (1966). “Dielectric-fibre surface waveguides for optical frequencies”. Proc. IEE113 (7): 1151–1158. doi:10.1049/piee.1966.0189.
  • Kao, K. C.; Davies, T. W. (1968). “Spectrophotometric Studies of Ultra Low Loss Optical Glasses – I: Single Beam Method”. Journal of Physics E2 (1): 1063–1068. Bibcode:1968JPhE….1.1063Kdoi:10.1088/0022-3735/1/11/303PMID 5707856.
  • K. C. Kao (June 1986), “1012 bit/s Optoelectronics Technology“, IEE Proceedings 133, Pt.J, No 3, 230–236. doi:10.1049/ip-j.1986.0037
  • 高錕傑出華人系列 (documentary and oral history) (in Cantonese, Chinese, and English). Radio Television Hong Kong. 2000. Retrieved September 27, 2018.
  • “Oral-History:Charles Kao”Engineering and Technology History Wiki (oral history transcript). Interview Conducted by Robert Colburn. September 26, 2018 [interview conducted in 2004]. Retrieved September 27, 2018.
  • Kao, Charles K. (2010). A Time and A Tide: Charles K. Kao ─ A Memoir (autobiography). Chinese University Press. ISBN 9789629969721.
    • Kao, Charles K. (2013) [the translation first published in 2005]. 潮平岸闊——高錕自傳 [A Time And A Tide: Charles K. Kao ─ A Memoir] (autobiography) (in Chinese). Translated by 許迪鏘 (First ed.). Joint Publishing (Hong Kong). ISBN 978-962-04-3444-0.

External links[edit]

 Wikiquote has quotations related to: Charles K. Kao
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Awards and achievements
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1985
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The Nobel Prize in Physics 2009
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Charles K. Kao

Facts

Charles Kuen Kao

© The Nobel Foundation. Photo: U. Montan

Charles Kuen Kao
The Nobel Prize in Physics 2009

Born: 4 November 1933, Shanghai, China

Died: 23 September 2018, Hong Kong

Affiliation at the time of the award: Standard Telecommunication Laboratories, Harlow, United Kingdom, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China

Prize motivation: “for groundbreaking achievements concerning the transmission of light in fibers for optical communication.”

Prize share: 1/2

Work

The rapid transmission of signals over long distances is fundamental to the flow of information in our time. Since the 1930s thin filaments, or fibers, of glass have been used to see inside the body, but these long remained unusable for long-distance information transfer because too much light was lost along the way. In the 1960s Charles Kao presented a solution: fibers of very pure glass transported sufficient light. Together with laser technology, his solution has made telecommunication using optical fibers possible.

To cite this section
MLA style: Charles K. Kao – Facts. NobelPrize.org. Nobel Media AB 2019. Sat. 14 Dec 2019. <https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/physics/2009/kao/facts/&gt;Back to top

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Advanced Materials and Technologies IV

Advanced Materials and Technologies IV

Editors:Dr. Stanislav KolisnychenkoComing in:December 2019Periodical and volume:Advanced Materials Research Vol. 1156Description:The presented volume of the journal “Advanced Materials Research” is the regular special issue from the series “Advanced Materials and Technologies” and collected from peer-reviewed stand-alone papers describing the results of research and engineering solutions dealing with actual problems in the area of materials science and materials processing technologies. Published articles will be useful for professionals in various branches of engineering, for students and academic staff concerned with the related specialties.

Contemporary Problems in Architecture and Construction II

Contemporary Problems in Architecture and Construction II

Editors:Gagik Galstyan, Narine Pirumyan, B.M. Yazyev and Anastasia LapinaComing in:December 2019Periodical and volume:Key Engineering Materials Vol. 828Description:The 11th International Conference on Contemporary Problems of Architecture and Construction (11th ICPAC-2019) was held from October 14 – 16, 2019, on the basis National University of Architecture and Construction of Armenia. The presented, according to the results of the conference collection, raises important problems in construction and architecture – from ideas and projects to their practical implementation on the real objects. We hope this book will be interesting and useful for many specialists in the field of modern construction and architecture.

Asian BioCeramics 18

Asian BioCeramics 18

Editors:Arief Cahyanto and I Made JoniComing in:December 2019Periodical and volume:Key Engineering Materials Vol. 829Description:This book contains papers collected from the 18th Asian BioCeramic (ABC) Symposium, held in Bandung, Indonesia on 19-20 September 2018 and reflected the most recent research made in the study of bioceramics and their applications. The papers are focused on synthesis, processing, and analysis of bioceramics properties, use of bioceramics for coating and surface modification of implants, application of bioceramics in the treatment of soft and hard tissue, infectious complications treatment, and tissue engineering in maxillofacial and orthopedic applications. The strong contribution related to the application of bioceramics and composite materials in dentistry and orthopedics, which is presented in this book, confirms the importance of these materials for clinical practice.…more

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Advances in Fracture and Damage Mechanics XVIII

Advances in Fracture and Damage Mechanics XVIII

Editors:Prof. S.A Paipetis and Prof. Ferri M.H.AliabadiOnline since:December 2019Periodical and volume:Key Engineering Materials Vol. 827Description:The volume is a collection of edited papers presented at the 18th International Conference on Fracture and Damage Mechanics (FDM 2019), which was held in Rodos Palace Hotel, Rhodes, Greece. The papers cover a wide range of topics related to fracture and damage mechanics. Studies on failure analysis, fracture mechanics, composites, micromechanics, multiscale modeling as well as probabilistic aspects, computer modeling methods, and non-linear problems are presented for a wide range of structural materials, both monolithic and composite. Studies include fatigue, corrosion, creep, dynamic fracture and durability together with damage tolerance aspects. Selected papers on multiscale and multifunctional composites have been presented together with works on structural health monitoring, remaining life assessment methodologies and predictive modeling.…more

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Materials and Technologies in Construction and Architecture II

Editors:Batyr M. Yazyev, Stepan V. Litvinov, Anastasia Lapina, Akay Oksana, Alina Yu. Golubeva and Anastasia KotesovaOnline since:December 2019Periodical and volume:Materials Science Forum Vol. 974Description:This volume contains papers collected by the results of the 2nd International Scientific Conference “Construction and Architecture: Theory and Practice for the innovation Development” (CATPID-2019, 1-5 October 2019, Kislovodsk, Russia). The presented conference materials raise important problems in the area of construction and architecture: from ideas, projects and ways for their solving and optimizing to immediate practical implementation. We hope that this collection will be useful and interesting for many specialists and researchers, which activity is related to the construction industry.

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Nano Hybrids and Composites Vol. 27

Online since:November 2019Periodical and volume:Nano Hybrids and Composites Vol. 27Description:This volume of the journal “Nano Hybrids and Composites” presents readers a special collection of the peer-reviewed articles covering some practical aspects in the research of properties and application of semiconductors in optoelectronics and photonics, concrete composites with polymer additions, nanocomposites for an application as a catalyst in the hydrocracking of castor oil and polymeric fibre reinforced structural materials for the nanosatellites frameworks. This volume will be useful for many specialists from the area of modern functional materials.

Journal of Nano Research Vol. 60

Journal of Nano Research Vol. 60

Online since:November 2019Periodical and volume:Journal of Nano Research Vol. 60Description:The 60th volume of the “Journal of Nano Research” presents to readers the collection of peer-reviewed papers by the results of the research from the field of synthesis, research properties and the use of various nanomaterials and nanostructures. We hope that this volume of the journal will be useful and interesting for a wide range of engineers, scientists, and students whose activity is related to the creation and using of nanomaterials and nanotechnologies in different branches of human activity.

Journal of Biomimetics, Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering Vol. 43

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Online since:November 2019Periodical and volume:Journal of Biomimetics, Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering Vol. 43Description:The 43rd volume of “Journal of Biomimetics, Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering” contains papers which reflect the latest results of scientific research and engineering decisions in the fields of biomechanics for sports medicine, practice of extracorporeal circulation and implantation; utilization of modern biomaterials in reconstruction of the bone defects and implantation; methods of medical images processing for the early cancer diagnostic in the current medical practice and for morphological researches in biochemistry. We hope that this volume will be useful for many researchers and engineers involved in different branches of modern biomedicine.…more2020-06-11 – 2020-06-148TH ASIA CONFERENCE ON MECHANICAL AND MATERIALS ENGINEERINGOrganizer : HKCBEESSHOW DETAILSALL CONFERENCES37 / 48

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When Ada Yonath (right) was awarded the hashtag#NobelPrize in hashtag#Chemistry she received a surprising call from another Nobel Laureate – Rita Levi-Montalcini (left). ”When I got the prize she was over 100 years old and she called me on the phone to congratulate me,” says Yonath. Levi-Montalcini is the longest living Nobel Laureate – she was 103 when she passed away. “One of her previous postdocs told me he asked her a question when she was about the age of 100,” says Yonath. “She told him: ‘Why don’t you come to the lecture that I’m going to give in two weeks and I will answer your questions!’” “That’s the way to become old: happy and with your mind intact!” *** Discover – https://scientific.net/!…visualizar maisVisualizar traduçãoAtive o link para visualizar imagem maior.GosteiComentarCompartilhar

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Image

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaJump to navigationJump to searchThis article is about visual artifacts or reproductions. For other uses, see Image (disambiguation).”Picture” redirects here. For other uses, see Picture (disambiguation).For Wikipedia image use guidelines, see Wikipedia:Images.

 This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.
Find sources: “Image” – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (April 2007) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

The act of making an image with a mobile phone camera. The display of the mobile phone shows the image being made.A scanned image of the definition of image and imagery, from Thomas Blount’sGlossographia Anglicana Nova, 1707.An SARradar image acquired by the SIR-C/X-SAR radar on board the Space Shuttle Endeavour shows the Teide volcano. The city of Santa Cruz de Tenerife is visible as the purple and white area on the lower right edge of the island. Lava flows at the summit crater appear in shades of green and brown, while vegetation zones appear as areas of purple, green and yellow on the volcano’s flanks

An image (from Latinimago) is an artifact that depicts visual perception, such as a photograph or other two-dimensional picture, particularly one that resembles a subject (usually a physical object). In the context of signal processing, an image is a distributed amplitude of color(s).[1]

Contents

Characteristics[edit]

Tourism in London795.jpg

Images may be two-dimensional, such as a photograph or screen display, or three-dimensional, such as a statue or hologram. They may be captured by optical devices (such as cameras, mirrorslensestelescopesmicroscopes) and natural objects and phenomena (such as the human eye or water).

The word “image” is also used in the broader sense of any two-dimensional figure such as a map, a graph, a pie chart, a painting or a banner. In this wider sense, images can also be rendered manually (such as by drawing, painting, carving), rendered automatically by printing or computer graphics technology, or developed by a combination of methods, especially in a pseudo-photograph.

A volatile image is one that exists only for a short period of time. This may be a reflection of an object by a mirror, a projection of a camera obscura, or a scene displayed on a cathode ray tube. A fixed image, also called a hard copy, is one that has been recorded on a material object, such as paper or textile by photography or any other digital process.

mental image exists in an individual’s mind, as something one remembers or imagines. The subject of an image need not be real; it may be an abstract concept, such as a graph, function, or imaginary entity. For example, Sigmund Freud claimed to have dreamed purely in aural-images of dialogs.[citation needed]

The development of synthetic acoustic technologies and the creation of sound art have led to a consideration of the possibilities of a sound-image made up of irreducible phonic substance beyond linguistic or musicological analysis.

Still or moving[edit]

En-wikipedia.jpg

still image is a single static image. This phrase is used in photography, visual media and the computer industry to emphasize that one is not talking about movies, or in very precise or pedantic technical writing such as a standard.

moving image is typically a movie (film) or video, including digital video. It could also be an animated display such as a zoetrope.

still frame is a still image derived from one frame of a moving one. In contrast, a film still is a photograph taken on the set of a movie or television program during production, used for promotional purposes.

Imagery (literary term)[edit]

Main article: Imagery

In literature, imagery “evoke[s] sense-impressions by literal or figurative reference to perceptible or ‘concrete’ objects, scenes, actions, or states.”[2]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Chakravorty, Pragnan (September 2018). “What is a Signal? [Lecture Notes]”. IEEE Signal Processing Magazine35 (5): 175–77. doi:10.1109/MSP.2018.2832195.
  2. ^ Baldick, Chris (2008). The Oxford Dictionary of Literary Terms (3rd ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 164–5. ISBN 978-0-19-920827-2.

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Nanoparticles Deliver Twin Drug Payload for Atherosclerosis

 
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Cyclodextrins have been of particular interest in the context of treating atherosclerosis, so today we want to highlight some interesting research that uses a novel delivery method to combat this disease.

Nanoparticles improve drug delivery

Cyclodextrins describe a group of cyclic oligosaccharides, which have a varied range of uses in the food, pharmaceutical, drug delivery, agricultural, and chemical industries due to their ability to solubilize and stabilize guest compounds.

In recent years, there has been an increasing interest in the use of nanoparticles in the context of drug delivery. In March 2020, researchers published a study showing how they encapsulated cyclodextrin molecules in order to deliver them to atherosclerotic lesions [1].

The researchers showed that polymeric cyclodextrin with a diameter of approximately 10 nanometers accumulates around 14 times more within atherosclerotic plaque than conventional cyclodextrin does. This is good news as it makes it possible to reduce plaque sizes using lower doses of cyclodextrin, making it more cost-effective and more efficient.

Building on this initial research, the results of a follow-up study have been published in the journal ACS Nano. Those researchers had used both cyclodextrin and statin molecules encapsulated in nanoparticles to deliver both to atherosclerotic lesions [2]. The researchers refined their process during this study to create nanoparticles with a diameter of 100 nanometers, making it even more efficient.

 

Upon arrival, the payload is released into the lesion, and the cyclodextrin binds the cholesterol molecules present in the lesion to it. This binding of the cholesterol appears to aid the macrophages present at the lesion site, presumably due to it binding at least some of the oxidized cholesterols.

Oxidized cholesterols and their byproducts, such as 7-ketocholesterol, are a real problem for macrophages to break down, and macrophages cannot metabolize 7-ketocholesterol at all. The macrophages keep on absorbing it until they grow into giant bloated and dying foam cells, which then contribute to the mass of atherosclerotic plaque.


The combination of cyclodextrin and statin appears to cause the reduction of cholesterol levels in established plaque in mice. Statins also seem to inhibit the formation of foam cells, which, again, suggests that the indigestible oxidized cholesterols and byproducts are being somewhat reduced in abundance. These results strongly suggest that the synergy of cyclodextrin and statin can address the inflammation and cholesterol-laden environment present within plaques.

Atherosclerotic plaques exhibit high deposition of cholesterol and macrophages. These are not only the main components of the plaques but also key inflammation-triggering sources. However, no existing therapeutics can achieve effective removal of both components within the plaques. Here, we report cargo-switching nanoparticles (CSNP) that are physicochemically designed to bind to cholesterol and release anti-inflammatory drug in the plaque microenvironment. CSNP have a core–shell structure with a core composed of an inclusion complex of methyl-β-cyclodextrin (cyclodextrin) and simvastatin (statin), and a shell of phospholipids. Upon interaction with cholesterol, which has higher affinity to cyclodextrin than statin, CSNP release statin and scavenge cholesterol instead through cargo-switching. CSNP exhibit cholesterol-sensitive multifaceted antiatherogenic functions attributed to statin release and cholesterol depletion in vitro. In mouse models of atherosclerosis, systemically injected CSNP target atherosclerotic plaques and reduce plaque content of cholesterol and macrophages, which synergistically leads to effective prevention of atherogenesis and regression of established plaques. These findings suggest that CSNP provide a therapeutic platform for interfacing with cholesterol-associated inflammatory diseases such as atherosclerosis.

Conclusion

The development of another way to address atherosclerosis is welcome given the lack of current solutions. These animal results also give hope that biotech company Underdog Pharmaceuticals‘ approaches to bust oxidized cholesterol using a modified form of cyclodextrin may also work.

 

Literature

[1] Kim, H., Han, J., & Park, J. H. (2020). Cyclodextrin polymer improves atherosclerosis therapy and reduces ototoxicity. Journal of Controlled Release, 319, 77-86.

[2] Kim, H., Kumar, S., Kang, D. W., Jo, H., & Park, J. H. (2020). Affinity-Driven Design of Cargo-Switching Nanoparticles to Leverage a Cholesterol-Rich Microenvironment for Atherosclerosis Therapy. ACS Nano.

About the author

Steve Hill

Steve serves on the LEAF Board of Directors and is the Editor in Chief, coordinating the daily news articles and social media content of the organization. He is an active journalist in the aging research and biotechnology field and has to date written over 500 articles on the topic, interviewed over 100 of the leading researchers in the field, hosted livestream events focused on aging, as well as attending various medical industry conferences. His work has been featured in H+ magazine, Psychology Today, Singularity Weblog, Standpoint Magazine, Swiss Monthly, Keep me Prime, and New Economy Magazine. Steve has a background in project management and administration which has helped him to build a united team for effective fundraising and content creation, while his additional knowledge of biology and statistical data analysis allows him to carefully assess and coordinate the scientific groups involved in the project.
  1. James Joyce
     
    June 27, 2020

    Underdogs approach will hopefully be cheaper if it does not require nanoparticles. Hopefully it will be quite effective also.

 
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New U.S. coronavirus cases break record; Pence cancels campaign events in Arizona, Florida

The 45,942 single-day increase was driven by more than 8,000 new cases in Florida and thousands more in Texas, Arizona and California, according to an NBC News tally.
 
 
 
 
 
 
By Nicole Acevedo, Joe Murphy and Josh Lederman

The U.S. set a new grim record in the number of new coronavirus cases in a single day, with reports of nearly 46,000 on Friday.

The 45,942 single-day increase was driven by more than 8,000 new cases in Florida and thousands more in Texas, Arizona and California, according to an NBC News tally.

 

Vice President Mike Pence meanwhile has postponed appearances that were planned in Arizona and Florida this coming week “out of an abundance of caution” due to the virus spikes in those states, an official with President Donald Trump’s campaign said Saturday.

 
 
 
 

Pence is still expected to travel to those states to meet with governors and local officials, but the visits will no longer include campaign events.

“Coronavirus cases in Florida and Arizona are spiking thanks to Trump’s ineffective response to this crisis — and the fact they were trying to hold unsafe events in these states at all is just another demonstration of their incompetence and bad judgment,” said Democratic National Committee spokesman David Bergstein. “The truth is that the spike in these states is an indictment of Trump’s botched handling of this pandemic, and it’s clear Pence can’t defend their record.”

The national, one-day increase in cases on Friday surpasses a record set Wednesday, when 45,557 new cases were reported.

A global health expert said the increase is due to much of the country’s reopening when there were still many active coronavirus cases.

 

“This is happening because much of the country around Memorial Day, and the weeks that followed, we opened up while we still had a large number of cases,” Dr. Ashish Jha, director of the Harvard Global Health Institute, told “TODAY” on Saturday, adding that the U.S. lacked the testing and contact tracing infrastructure needed to reopen safely.

“We opened up too fast. We opened up bars; we opened up nightclubs; and is the combination of all that that has led us to where we are today,” Jha said.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Friday expressed regret about the reopening process in his state.

Full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak

Abbott said in two local TV news interviews that if he “could go back and redo anything,” he would have slowed reopening of bars after seeing “how quickly the coronavirus spread in the bar setting.

A Democratic congressman from Texas criticized the Republican governor, saying he “decided he was going to follow Trump.”

“It didn’t have to happen this way,” Rep. Marc Veasey told MSNBC on Saturday. “The governor was warned months ago that we were facing a looming potential crisis and he absolutely wanted to do nothing about it.”

 
 
 
 

Among all states, Arizona has seen the highest per-capita rate of coronavirus cases in the last two weeks, logging more than 400 per 100,000 residents. Arizona has 7 million residents, and its 30,000-plus new cases in that time period only falls short of the increases in California, Texas and Florida.

Coronavirus cases are up in over 20 states and territories around the country.

With the rising number of coronavirus cases in Florida, all beaches in Miami-Dade County will be closed for the July 4 weekend. Parks will also be off-limits for public viewing of fireworks, Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez said in a statement.

Florida first broke its single-day record on Wednesday when 5,508 new cases were reported, and set a new high Friday when 8,942 cases were reported.

On Saturday, that record was broken again with Florida reporting more than 9,500 new confirmed cases, according to the state’s Health Department.

 
 
 
 

In New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday that the state’s Health Department identified some coronavirus clusters upstate.

State health officials are investigating a potential coronavirus exposure at a high school graduation in Westchester County north of New York City after an individual who had recently traveled to Florida attended the ceremony.

Download the NBC News app for full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak

That person “subsequently began showing symptoms and tested positive for COVID-19,” Cuomo said in a statement. “Since then, four more individuals who attended the ceremony and had contact with the first positive case have also tested positive.”

New York officials are also looking into a cluster in an Oswego County apple-packaging plant and another in an aluminum manufacturer in Montgomery County.

This is a developing story; check back for updates.

 
 
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NEWS

CD47 blockade could work as immunotherapy across multiple diseases

Researchers have demonstrated that blocking CD47-mediated signalling in mice can enhance the speed of pathogen clearance, presenting a new potential form of immunotherapy.

CD47 - immunotherapy

CD47 molecule

Researchers from the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) have reported their discovery of a potential immunotherapy target that could be used in the development of treatments including for SARS-CoV-2, the virus causing the COVID-19 pandemic. 

With fresh news every day and space for you to discuss and publish your coronavirus research, our new COVID-19 research hub has everything you need to keep up to date with R&D during the pandemic. Why not see for yourself?

Visit our COVID-19 research hub

According to the NIH, when the immune system first responds to infectious agents such as viruses or bacteria, a natural brake on the response prevents overactivation. However, the researchers revealed how pathogens can turn this overactivation on. 

The team explain that when a cell senses an infectious agent with molecules called pathogen recognition receptors, part of its response is to increase cell surface expression of a molecule called CD47. Increased CD47 expression dampens the ability of cells called macrophages, the immune system’s first responders, to engulf infected cells and further stimulate the immune response. Upregulation of CD47 on cells was observed by the researchers for diverse types of infections including those caused by mouse retroviruses, lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus, LaCrosse virus, SARS CoV-2 and by the bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi and Salmonella enterica typhi.

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The researchers say that by blocking CD47-mediated signalling with antibodies in mice infected with lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus, they demonstrated they could enhance the speed of pathogen clearance in a form of immunotherapy. Furthermore, knocking out the CD47 gene in mice improved their ability to control M. tuberculosis infections and significantly prolonged their survival. In addition, retrospective studies of cells and plasma from people infected with hepatitis C virus indicated that humans also upregulate CD47. In these studies, inflammatory cytokine stimuli and direct infection both promoted increased CD47 expression. 

Therefore, the findings open the possibility of using CD47 blockade as a new immunotherapy to treat a wide range of different infections, conclude the team.

“There may be circumstances where host responses need boosting and CD47 represents a novel target for host-directed therapies in such cases,” the scientists write, mentioning SARS-CoV-2, HIV, HPV and Ebola virus among several possibilities.

The study was published in mBio

 
 
 
 
 

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Gene therapy and CRISPR strategies for curing blindness (Yes, you read that right)

By Hemant Khanna – Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, University of Massachusetts Medical School
 

In recent months, even as our attention has been focused on the coronavirus outbreak, there have been a slew of scientific breakthroughs in treating diseases that cause blindness.

Researchers at U.S.-based Editas Medicine and Ireland-based Allergan have administered CRISPR for the first time to a person with a genetic disease. This landmark treatment uses the CRISPR approach to a specific mutation in a gene linked to childhood blindness. The mutation affects the functioning of the light-sensing compartment of the eye, called the retina, and leads to loss of the light-sensing cells.

According to the World Health Organization, at least 2.2 billion people in the world have some form of visual impairment. In the United States, approximately 200,000 people suffer from inherited forms of retinal disease for which there is no cure. But things have started to change for good. We can now see light at the end of the tunnel.

I am an ophthalmology and visual sciences researcher, and am particularly interested in these advances because my laboratory is focusing on designing new and improved gene therapy approaches to treat inherited forms of blindness.

The eye as a testing ground for CRISPR

Gene therapy involves inserting the correct copy of a gene into cells that have a mistake in the genetic sequence of that gene, recovering the normal function of the protein in the cell. The eye is an ideal organ for testing new therapeutic approaches, including CRISPR. That is because the eye is the most exposed part of our brain and thus is easily accessible.

The second reason is that retinal tissue in the eye is shielded from the body’s defense mechanism, which would otherwise consider the injected material used in gene therapy as foreign and mount a defensive attack response. Such a response would destroy the benefits associated with the treatment.

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In recent years, breakthrough gene therapy studies paved the way to the first ever Food and Drug Administration-approved gene therapy drug, Luxturna TM, for a devastating childhood blindness disease, Leber congenital amaurosis Type 2.

This form of Leber congenital amaurosis is caused by mutations in a gene that codes for a protein called RPE65. The protein participates in chemical reactions that are needed to detect light. The mutations lessen or eliminate the function of RPE65, which leads to our inability to detect light – blindness.

The treatment method developed simultaneously by groups at University of Pennsylvania and at University College London and Moorefields Eye Hospital involved inserting a healthy copy of the mutated gene directly into the space between the retina and the retinal pigmented epithelium, the tissue located behind the retina where the chemical reactions takes place. This gene helped the retinal pigmented epithelium cell produce the missing protein that is dysfunctional in patients.

Although the treated eyes showed vision improvement, as measured by the patient’s ability to navigate an obstacle course at differing light levels, it is not a permanent fix. This is due to the lack of technologies that can fix the mutated genetic code in the DNA of the cells of the patient.

A new technology to erase the mutation

Lately, scientists have been developing a powerful new tool that is shifting biology and genetic engineering into the next phase. This breakthrough gene editing technology, which is called CRISPR, enables researchers to directly edit the genetic code of cells in the eye and correct the mutation causing the disease.

Children suffering from the disease Leber congenital amaurosis Type 10 endure progressive vision loss beginning as early as one year old. This specific form of Leber congenital amaurosis is caused by a change to the DNA that affects the ability of the gene – called CEP290 – to make the complete protein. The loss of the CEP290 protein affects the survival and function of our light-sensing cells, called photoreceptors.

One treatment strategy is to deliver the full form of the CEP290 gene using a virus as the delivery vehicle. But the CEP290 gene is too big to be cargo for viruses. So another approach was needed. One strategy was to fix the mutation by using CRISPR.

The scientists at Editas Medicine first showed safety and proof of the concept of the CRISPR strategy in cells extracted from patient skin biopsy and in nonhuman primate animals.

These studies led to the formulation of the first ever in human CRISPR gene therapeutic clinical trial. This Phase 1 and Phase 2 trial will eventually assess the safety and efficacy of the CRISPR therapy in 18 Leber congenital amaurosis Type 10 patients. The patients receive a dose of the therapy while under anesthesia when the retina surgeon uses a scope, needle and syringe to inject the CRISPR enzyme and nucleic acids into the back of the eye near the photoreceptors.

To make sure that the experiment is working and safe for the patients, the clinical trial has recruited people with late-stage disease and no hope of recovering their vision. The doctors are also injecting the CRISPR editing tools into only one eye.

A new CEP290 gene therapy strategy

An ongoing project in my laboratory focuses on designing a gene therapy approach for the same gene CEP290. Contrary to the CRISPR approach, which can target only a specific mutation at one time, my team is developing an approach that would work for all CEP290 mutations in Leber congenital amaurosis Type 10.

This approach involves using shorter yet functional forms of the CEP290 protein that can be delivered to the photoreceptors using the viruses approved for clinical use.

Gene therapy that involves CRISPR promises a permanent fix and a significantly reduced recovery period. A downside of the CRISPR approach is the possibility of an off-target effect in which another region of the cell’s DNA is edited, which could cause undesirable side effects, such as cancer. However, new and improved strategies have made such likelihood very low.

Although the CRISPR study is for a specific mutation in CEP290, I believe the use of CRISPR technology in the body to be exciting and a giant leap. I know this treatment is in an early phase, but it shows clear promise. In my mind, as well as the minds of many other scientists, CRISPR-mediated therapeutic innovation absolutely holds immense promise.

More ways to tackle blindness

In another study just reported in the journal Science, German and Swiss scientists have developed a revolutionary technology, which enables mice and human retinas to detect infrared radiation. This ability could be useful for patients suffering from loss of photoreceptors and sight.

The researchers demonstrated this approach, inspired by the ability of snakes and bats to see heat, by endowing mice and postmortem human retinas with a protein that becomes active in response to heat. Infrared light is light emitted by warm objects that is beyond the visible spectrum.

The heat warms a specially engineered gold particle that the researchers introduced into the retina. This particle binds to the protein and helps it convert the heat signal into electrical signals that are then sent to the brain.

In the future, more research is needed to tweak the ability of the infrared sensitive proteins to different wave lengths of light that will also enhance the remaining vision.

This approach is still being tested in animals and in retinal tissue in the lab. But all approaches suggest that it might be possible to either restore, enhance or provide patients with forms of vision used by other species.

Hemant Khanna is an associate professor of ophthalmology at University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester.

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

The Conversation
 
 
 
 
 

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