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Low-Cost Plastic Sensors Could Monitor a Range of Health Conditions

By ­niversity of Cambridge

June 27, 2018

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An international team led by researchers at the University of Cambridge in the U.K. and King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia has developed a low-cost sensor made from semiconducting plastic that can diagnose or monitor a wide range of health conditions.

The sensor can measure the amount of critical metabolites, such as lactate or glucose, present in bodily fluids; when incorporated into a diagnostic device, the sensor allows health conditions to be monitored quickly, inexpensively, and accurately.

The new device has a simpler design than conventional sensors, and could open up a range of new applications for health monitoring at the cellular level.

The researchers built the sensor using a newly synthesized polymer that acts as a molecular wire. When the material comes into contact with a bodily fluid, it absorbs ions and becomes merged with the liquid, leading to significantly higher sensitivity compared to traditional sensors made of metal electrodes.

From University of Cambridge
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