In 2001 virologists in Rotterdam, The Netherlands discovered a new virus that causes serious respiratory illnesses mainly in young children. The discovery was the beginning of a successful company that enabled the development and production of a range of diagnostic products. This led to substantial job creation and made a positive contribution to public health.
Being an HIV-infected person in the 1980s meant having a mostly lethal condition and taking up to twenty pills a day to postpone the inevitable death sentence. Thanks to research done in a collaboration between Belgian, Czech and United States researchers, an HIV infection is now rather a chronic disease for which only one pill a day is sufficient to lead a virtually normal life.
When scientists from the Belgian Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) met technology transfer professionals, they could not foresee how only a couple of years later they would be heading a firm developing and selling a full range of microscopes based on digital holography. The basic technology was developed at the university, the applications by the spin-off company Ovizio.
Cochlear implants greatly improve the quality of life for severely hearing-impaired people. However, understanding speech in noisy conditions remains a challenge. Scientists from the University of Leuven in Belgium and market leader Cochlear are developing software that improves signal processing in cochlear implants, enabling better speech recognition.
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