Scientific innovations have been going on for years to produce better testing instruments with least amount of spread of bacteria and infections involved. After considerable research it’s being declared that normal tattoos on the skin are to become fruitful in determining the person’s blood levels of sugar, glucose and alcohol by using an iPhone 4 camera.
How Will It Work?
While getting tattoos, from now on a 100 nano-meter wide collection of sensors would be implanted under the skin. These are to be covered with an oily casing to ensure that every component remains intact beneath the skin. Small particles present in the blood plasma are to bind with the sensors with the help of an external agent. These neutral particles undergo rapid ionization leading to change in the charge of the substance, which caters for the variation in the fluorescent emission of the tattoos due to blood plasma level changes. (The process is detailed in an article published in the journal Integrative Biology)
Dr. Heather Clark, an associate professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences at North-Eastern University is heading the research on these sub-dermal sensors. She expects that if common man is able to get access to portable and cheaper monitoring devices, they can easily keep track of their blood plasma levels and regulate their medicine intake accordingly.
Matt Dubach, a bioengineering grad student from the same university as Dr. Clark, has been able to formulate an iPhone 4 attachment which uses its camera to read the change in fluorescence of the tattoos and provide a quantitative result for the blood levels. Surrounding light is blocked by a plastic ring present around the camera lens which helps to get possible accurate results. A 9V battery powered blue LEDs are used for this purpose — to incorporate the iPhone inbuilt RGB filters to evaluate the light coming from the sensors. LEDs detect the change in the red fluorescence of the sensors through the skin thus ample variation in colour is visible.
This can prove to be an important breakthrough in human healthcare department which may prove beneficial to diabetics and athletes, who have to maintain their plasma levels in specific ranges. Testing is still going on mice which show positive results whereas it hasn’t being yet tested on humans.
Dubach and Dr. Clark are very hopeful for the new development. They are citing iPhone 5 for improved technology which could help them in obtaining much more precise and accurate data for analysis.
Overall this new research may be the harbinger of the reduction in the invasive techniques for detection of normal blood plasma levels. Health medicine will see a huge innovation as soon as this technology of subdermal sensors with use of smartphone applications becomes a total success.
Then you may take out your iPhone and shine your camera on your favorite tattoos – Viola! Your blood sugar level is perfectly normal!!! 😀