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Wearable Sweat Sensors Could Help Diagnose Diseases

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Wearable Sweat Sensors Could Help Diagnose Diseases

The new wearable sweat sensors can now help diagnose diseases like cystic fibrosis and diabetes. As compared to the old ones, the new model requires only a trace of moisture to do its job.

The sweat sensors are believed to improve diagnosis and treatment of cystic fibrosis, diabetes and other health problems. Cystic fibrosis is an inherited disorder that has the tendency to damage the lungs and pancreas. There is yet no treatment for this disorder.

The device has been designed by researchers in collaboration with researchers at the University of California, Berkeley. It contains flexible sensors and microprocessors that stick to the skin of an individual and stimulate the sweat glands. As an additional feature, the sensor sends its results to a smartphone. These flexible plastic patches can be worn on the wrists or used as headbands. This also will be able to provide early warning changes in our body.

Also see: Fitness band 

Wearable sweat sensors pave the way for real time analysis of body chemistry. This flexible sensor system can measure metabolites and electrolytes in sweat. Further, it calibrates the data based upon the skin temperature. The sensors generate electrical signals while in contact with sweat that are further amplified and filtered.

High chloride ion levels in the sweat may indicate cystic fibrosis, while high blood glucose levels indicate diabetes. Study principal investigator Ali Javey, a UC Berkeley Professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences said "Human sweat contains physiologically rich information, thus making it an attractive body fluid for non-invasive wearable sensors".

However, additional research is needed to find out whether the wearable sweat sensor would consistently work from one day to the next. Based on the diet and other factors of an individual, the contents of an individual's sweat frequently changes.

Biosensors have an extraordinary impact in the research and consumer space. The devices range from glucose monitoring to cancer detection and many more. Lately, the measured self-development has expanded the interest for wearable biosensors, provoking scientists to research better and come up with new ways to bring laboratory technology to the hands and homes of individuals.

With Inputs from AFP

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