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Fortune

Researchers from MIT’s Research Laboratory for Electronics have developed a portable desalinator that can turn seawater into safe drinking water, reports Ian Mount for Fortune. Research scientist Jongyoon Han and graduate student Bruce Crawford have created Nona Technologies to commercialize the product, writes Mount.

NIH

Lawrence A. Tabak, who is currently performing the duties of the NIH Director, spotlights a new study by Prof. James Collins and his colleagues aimed at exploring the potential of AI to streamline the process of selecting new antibiotics. “In future studies, the Collins lab will continue to incorporate and train the computers on even more biochemical and biophysical data to help with the predictive process," Tabak writes. "That’s why this study should be interpreted as an interim progress report on an area of science that will only get better with time.”

CNN

MIT researchers have “developed a free-floating desalination unit consisting of a multilayer evaporator that recycles the heat generated when the water vapor condenses, boosting its overall efficiency,” reports Nell Lewis for CNN. “Researchers suggested it could be configured as a floating panel on the sea, delivering freshwater through pipes to the shore, or it could be designed to serve a single household, using it atop a tank of seawater,” writes Lewis.

Economist

Prof. Edward Boyden has developed a new imaging technique called expansion-revealing microscopy that can reveal tiny protein structures in tissues, reports The Economist. “Already his team at MIT has used it to reveal detail in synapses, the nanometer-sized junctions between nerve cells, and also to shed light on the mechanisms at play in Alzheimer’s disease, revealing occasional spirals of amyloid-beta protein around axons, which are the threadlike parts of nerve cells that carry electrical impulses.”

New Scientist

Professor Eric Alm speaks with Claire Ainsworth at New Scientist about studying wastewater to better understand the health, wealth and environment of various communities. “It’s not about going in and taking a measurement,” said Alm. “It’s about developing a platform that can help you reach insights about what’s going on.”

Politico

Researchers from MIT and Harvard have developed a “3D-printed ‘lab-on-a-chip’ that could detect Covid-19 immunity levels and Covid infections from saliva within two hours,” reports Ben Leonard and Ruth Reader for Politico.

The Daily Beast

Researchers from MIT and other institutions have developed a postcard-sized test that can detect a Covid-19 infection and the presence of antibodies resulting from an infection, reports Maddie Bender for the Daily Beast.  “What excites me about this diagnostic device is that it combines a high level of accuracy with a flexible design that could make it a major tool in our arsenal for addressing future pandemics,” explains Prof. James Collins.

Wired

Wired reporter Maggie Chen spotlights Prof. Katharina Ribbeck and her lab’s work deconstructing how glycans hidden inside mucus can work to keep specific organisms healthy. Glycans “can be beneficial – assisting in food digestion, regulating immunity, and protecting against germs – but that can be harmful if they outcompete one another or become virulent, potentially leading to infection,” writes Chen.

Popular Mechanics

Researchers at MIT have developed a wood-like plant material which could eventually serve as a viable wood substitute in various construction projects, reports Tim Newcomb for Popular Mechanics. Researchers adjust “chemicals in the growth process to precisely control the physical and mechanical properties, such as stiffness and density,” explains Newcomb.

The Boston Globe

Instructor Natalie Kuldell writes for The Boston Globe about the importance of creating more workplace learning opportunities for high school students. “Without question, every career decision I’ve made has been influenced by that first summer internship, guiding my choice of undergraduate major, my doctoral thesis, my postdoctoral fellowship, and then my academic and teaching life,” writes Kuldell.

Fast Company

MIT researchers developed a suitcase-sized, portable desalination device that can turn salt water into drinking water with the push of a button, reports Elissaveta M. Brandon for Fast Company. Brandon writes that the device could be a “vital tool for remote island communities, seafaring cargo ships, and even refugee camps located near water.”

Motherboard

Motherboard reporter Audrey Carleton writes that MIT researchers have developed a “filter-less portable desalination device that uses an electrical field generated by solar energy to repel charged particles like salt, bacteria, and viruses.” Research Scientist Junghyo Yoon explains that: “All indicators tell us that water scarcity is a growing problem for everyone due to rising sea levels. We don’t hope for a grim future, but we want to help people be prepared for it.” 

The Daily Beast

A new portable, solar-powered desalination device developed by MIT researchers can create potable drinking water with the push of a button, reports Tony Ho Tran for The Daily Beast. “The device doesn’t rely on any filters like traditional desalination machines,” writes Tran. “Instead, it zaps the water with electric currents to remove minerals such as salt particles from the water.”

The Boston Globe

Boston Globe reporter David Abel spotlights the Mice Against Ticks project, which is aimed at preventing tick-borne diseases such as Lyme disease through immunizing mice.  “With so many people suffering from Lyme every single day, which is an awful disease, we need a solution urgently,” explains graduate student and Mice Against Ticks research director Joanna Buchthal. “This offers a real, if revolutionary, way to tackle the problem.”

The Boston Globe

Satellite Bio, a startup co-founded by Prof. Sangeeta Bhatia, aims to create “tissue implants to ‘repair, restore, or even replace’ diseased or dying organs,” reports Ryan Cross for The Boston Globe.