Biomedical Science

Sweat-based non-invasive diagnosis

Researchers have developed a new device that can generate sweat at resting and detect markers and transmit through a mobile phone.

May 13, 2021
The Scitech

Indian researchers have developed a new device that can generate sweat at resting and detect markers and transmit through a mobile phone. This sweat based non-invasive point of health diagnosis technology would be an alternative to blood based invasive diagnosis. The study has been carried out by a team of researchers led by an alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Hyderabad, Dr Brince Paul. This study has been published in Advanced Material Technologies journals. “As a research development, we have shown the sweat extraction, a collection using micro-fluidics, and monitoring of the some of the sweat markers present in sweat in a single smart platform and wireless transmission over the cloud to display in a smartphone” said Dr Brince Paul. Making such a non-invasive tool available could accelerate medical research to progress in this field. For example the direct chloride level in sweat is useful for screening cystic fibrosis. Similarly, potassium level correlated with plasma for ambulatory monitoring and sweat quality control, pH as an indicator of metabolic alkalosis, glucose for screening pre-diabetic conditions or monitoring tool for diabetes, and lactate for assessing metabolic efficiency etc., are some of them.

“We mainly focused on the sweat extraction during resting position particularly valuable to gather information on the health status of sedentary individuals or for medical analysis in sedentary conditions. Although, exercise is a common method for sweat induction that can be easily applied to athletes and amateur sportsmen, an alternative way of sweat stimulation is required which can be incorporated with smart watch technology. Developing such a sweat stimulation technology would enable monitoring of markers from the sweat during resting conditions as well as exercise as a normal smart watch doing for physiological signals monitoring. This would lead to a non-invasive continuous monitoring of various biomarkers as an alternative to blood monitoring. The features of cloud data storage inclusion facilitated remote diagnosis on individuals which is necessary during current pandemic situations”, added Dr Paul.

The correlation between the concentrations of ions measured from sweat using the new device and with ion chromatography analysis demonstrates the applicability of the system for real-time point-of-care monitoring of the health status of individuals. Furthermore, wireless transmission enables real-time data monitoring and storage over a cloud platform. This printed fluidic sweat patch provides a cost-effective solution for the on-demand analysis of sweat components for healthcare applications.

Source: India Science Wire