5 Free tools for image creation and processing

The work of a scientist is not just about experimenting in a laboratory. We also spend a lot of time attending meetings and conferences with colleagues and other researchers. There, we present the results of our experiments and explain our hypotheses. Or we write reports of our findings for publication in scientific journals. Either way, to grab people’s attention we need to wrap our ideas in compelling stories.

The use of images, cartoons and sketches is a good way to emphasize your message. It will help your audience visualize and understand complex concepts better. And the act of designing and creating a schematic will help yourself to clarify the key points of what you’re trying to say. I believe, being able to produce eye-catching illustrations is a crucial skill for every researcher, so I decided to share my favorite tools to create and process images.

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Polymer-drug conjugates: idea and implementation

Polymer-drug conjugates include polymer prodrugs, PEGylated biomolecules, and antibody-drug conjugates

Today I want to talk about polymer-drug conjugates. What’s the idea behind such conjugates? What are the advantages and challenges? And are there any polymer-drug conjugates in clinical use?

I became interested in this topic during my PhD, as I was developing a polymer carrier material for ocular use. Since my carrier should be water-soluble, conjugation was the best way to incorporate drugs into the formulation. The concept of polymer-drug conjugates had already been described in the 1970s,[1] but hadn’t really been pursued in ocular drug delivery. Here, I will highlight some advantages of this technology and if you are interested to learn more, you can read my PhD thesis here.
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Transformative businesses and my definition of success

group's hand fist bump over desk with several laptops
Figure 1. Happiness at the workplace as a measure for success. Link

A few weeks ago I happened to attend a workshop on transformative entrepreneurship. During the summer I had started to volunteer for the Helsinki-based not-for-profit organization The Shortcut. The Shortcut supports tech startups by bringing people with different backgrounds together. They organize a multitude of events and trainings, for example an annual series of workshops, called School of Startups.

I was helping with the registrations during the School of Startups and whenever there was nothing else to do, I could participate in the sessions. This is how I found myself in this particular workshop about transformative entrepreneurship, which was really quite interesting and philosophical. The speaker was Sampsa Fabritius, CEO and founder of Kieku (an artificial intelligence powered podcast radio), and he started by asking us how we define success.

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Polymers in Ophthalmology (Part 1)

Let’s talk about polymers in ophthalmology. It’s no secret that I’m fascinated by the various applications of polymers. I have also spent the last couple of years developing polymer-based formulations for back of the eye drug delivery for my PhD. Now, I was curious to find out where else polymer materials are used in and around the eye. I started with a quick search that turned into a week of reading, because it seems, polymers and eyes go really well together. To cover all the clinical applications (that I found), I decided to split this post into several parts. Here is part 1 dealing with Viscoelastic & Drug Delivery Formulations.

Scheme of the eye and all its parts
Figure 1. Scheme of the eye and its parts.

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