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Science and Technology of Unique Biocompatible Multifunctional Ultrananocrystalline Diamond (UNCDTM) Coating for New Generations of High-Tech and Implantable Medical Devices/Prostheses



This talk will focus on discussing the science and technology of a unique biocompatible paradigm material named ultrananocrystalline diamond (UNCDTM) in film form, and the integration to produce new generations of high-tech and external and implantable medical devices and prostheses, described below: UNCD films co-developed and patented by O. Auciello and colleagues are synthesized by novel microwave plasma chemical vapor deposition (MPCVD) and hot filament chemical vapor deposition (HFCVD) techniques using a patented Ar-rich/CH4 gas flow chemistry that produces a plasma, cracking CH4 molecules, via microwave power coupled to the gas in the MPCVD process, or hot filaments cracking CH4 molecules, both producing C-based species growing the UNCD films with the smallest gran size demonstrated today (3-5 nm). The UNCD films exhibit the lowest friction coefficient (0.02-0.04) compared with metals (≥ 0.5) currently used in many prostheses, electrically conductive UNCD coatings with nitrogen in grain boundaries can enable a new generation of neural electrodes, UNCD coatings are the best biocompatible material, because they are made of C atoms (element of life in the human DNA, cells, and molecules). Original Biomedical Implants (OBI-USA) and OBI-México, founded by Auciello and colleagues, are developing new generations of UNCD-based high-tech and implantable medical devices/prostheses, described in order of less to highest development until now, namely: a) Brain neurons functionalized UNCD-coated polymer with tailored stiffness, enabling next generation less invasive electrodes for neural stimulation; b)  3-D UNCD scaffolds for pluripotent stem cells growth and electric field induced differentiation into other human cells, for biological treatments of medical conditions (e.g. Parkinson’s’ and other cerebral diseases);  c) UNCD-based piezo-actuated MEMS cantilevers powered by biting heart cells to provide energy to new generation  defibrillator/pacemaker, eliminating battery power, and to detect bacteria, viruses and more, via transformational UNCD-based biosensors; d) new generation of Li-ion batteries with ≥ 10x longer life and safer, using electrically conductive Nitrogen -doped N-UNCD-based electrodes, enabling next generation defibrillator/pacemakers and implantable and external power generation devices with order of magnitude longer battery powered life and safer; e) UNCD-coated polymer valve to treat Glaucoma condition;  f) Integrated UNCD-coated magnet outside the eye, creating magnetic field to attract biocompatible superparamagnetic Fe2O3 nanoparticles (approved by FDA) injected inside the eye to push detached retina to place, enabling revolutionary retina reattachment (clinical trials in humans in progress in Argentina); g) New generation of implantable prostheses (e.g., dental implants (clinical trials in humans-40 patients received UNCD-coated DI, since 2018 to present, in a World Class clinic in Querétaro-México), hips, knees, stents and more) coated with UNCD, eliminating failure of current metal-based prostheses, due to synergistic mechanical wear / chemical corrosion by body fluids;  h) Water purification system with corrosion resistant B-UNCD coated metal electrodes passing electric current through water, creating ozone that kill all bacteria, viruses and any pathogen for fast disinfection of medical instruments and systems; i)  Key medical device, is a UNCD-coated silicon based microchip implantable inside the eye as a key component of the artificial retina to return partial vision to people blinded by genetically-induced degeneration of photoreceptors (a device named Argus II is currently in the USA and EU markets by Second Sight, returning partial vision to people blinded by retinitis pigmentosa);


About the Speaker

Auciello graduated with honors: M.S. (1973), Ph.D. (1976) – Physics, Institute “Balseiro”/Universidad Nacional Cuyo-Argentina); EE-Universidad de Córdoba-Argentina (1970). Postdoctoral-McMaster University, Canada (1977-1979); Researcher-Toronto University-Canada (1979-1984), Associate Professor-NCSU-USA (1984-1988), Distinguished Scientist-Microelectronic Center of North Carolina (MCNC)-USA (1988-1996), Distinguished Argonne Fellow (1996-2012)-Argonne National Laboratory-USA. Currently (2012-present), Auciello is Distinguished Endowed Chair Professor-University of Texas-Dallas, Materials Science/Engineering and Bioengineering. Auciello directs basic/applied research on multifunctional oxide [ferroelectric (piezoelectric)/high-K dielectrics films], and nanocarbon films (novel ultrananocrystalline diamond (UNCDTM) and graphene films) and applications to industrial, high-tech, and medical devices / prostheses. UNCD film technology is commercialized for industrial products by Advanced Diamond Technologies (Auciello/Carlisle founders -2003, profitable in 2012, sold to large company for profit-2019), and by Original Biomedical Implants (OBI-USA, 2013) and OBI-México (2016) (Auciello/ colleagues/founders), developing new generations of superior medical devices/prostheses and other implants. Auciello edited 31 books and published about 550 articles in several fields, holds 23 patents, He was associate editor of APL and currently of Integrated Ferroelectrics, Functional Diamond, and Coatings. He was President of the Materials Research Society (2013) Auciello is Fellow of AAAS and MRS and has numerous Awards. e-mail: orlando.auciello@utdallas.edu

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  • Amila Nanayakkara

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