Teacher Insights: How Digital Technology Helps in Growth and Access to Quality Education  |  Management lessons: How Brands Use CARE to Stay on Top in Instagram  |  Hobbies &Trends: At Full Throttle  |  Finance: Bitcoin Mobile Apps Vulnerable to Security Threats: Guan-Hua Tu, MSU  |  International Edu News: Use plants' ability to tell the time to make food production more sustainable  |  International Edu News: Scientists develop new class of cancer drug with potential to treat leukaemia  |  International Edu News: Loan applications processed around midday more likely to be rejected  |  International Edu News: Researchers find climate change impacts plankton – a key marine food source  |  International Edu News: Nature must be a partner, not just a provider of services – Oxford report  |  National Edu News: Approval to MoU between India and UK on Global Innovation Partnership  |  National Edu News: Transfer of CSIR-CMERI technologies to three MSMEs  |  Parent Interventions: Child Learning Programs: How to Find the Right One for You  |  Rajagiri Round Table: Fitness Challenge for the Nation  |  Education Information: West Bengal Scholarship 2021  |  Education Information: What is PMEGP Scheme? How can you get it?  |  
March 17, 2021 Wednesday 04:20:16 PM IST

New wearable sensors capable of monitoring biomarkers from sweat

Education Information

Dr. Vinu Mohan A.M., scientist at CSIR-Central Electrochemical Research Institute (CECRI), Karaikudi, Tamil Nadu, a recipient of the INSPIRE Faculty Fellowship instituted by the Department of Science & Technology, Government of India, has introduced a flexible low cost, wearable sensor that can track sweat for monitoring the health and physiological status of the human body. It can obviate the necessity of blood and other invasive tests.

The wearable microfluidic sensor, which does not need a clean room, can be used for in situ monitoring of biomarkers such as lactate, Sodium (Na+), Potassium (K+), and Alkaline/acidic nature (pH)  simultaneously from sweat samples. Using the INSPIRE Faculty fellowship, Dr. Vinu is improving upon the sensor to make it stretchable as well so that it can monitor the sweat during exercising and biking.

The sensor can analyse biomarkers from human sweat during exercise activities without transfer of signals. The high-throughput sweat sampling ability of the sensor facilitates continuous capture and transport of sweat over the surface of the device resulting in real-time analysis. The flexible sensor can be attached on the irregular skin surface and monitors the dynamic biomarker levels, and are important for clinical diagnosis and personalized point-of-care analysis.

Developing microfluidic sensors with rapid sweat sampling and multiplexed electrochemical recognition abilities are extremely important for accurate sweat biomarker analyses and continuous real-time monitoring of health.

In the sensor set up by Dr. Vinu’s research group, a fluidic channel captures real-time sweat and directs it through the active sensing electrodes for subsequent interference-free analyses. A miniaturized printed circuit board collects cross-talk-free sensor responses without the need for wires. The fully-integrated pump-less microfluidic device is mounted on the skin, and the regional variations in sweat composition are analyzed at the underarm and upperback locations during stationary biking. The epidermal patch can monitor the hydration level and oxygenation of muscles which is essential for fitness monitoring application. This research has been published in the journal ‘ACS Sensor’.

Dr. Vinu Mohan and his team are also exploring other reliable biofluids such as saliva and fluid in tissues as they contain abundant chemical markers that could reflect the underlying physiology of the human body. They are also in-parallel focusing on developing wearable energy storage devices as they are essential for powering wearable electrochemical sensors. An all-printed solid-state flexible and stretchable supercapacitor having serpentine-shaped, interdigitated, freestanding interconnects was recently developed and used as energy buffering element for powering a wearable pulse rate sensor. The work was published in NanoEnergy journal. Besides, his group is developing omni-directionally stretchable high-performance supercapacitors for self-powered wearable sensors.