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BITS Scientists Develop a Portable Device to Detect Diabetes from Sweat Samples    

Written by : Trishti Pariwal

August 25, 2023

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Scientists of BITS Pilani Institute have developed a groundbreaking portable device to detect diabetes from sweat. They used 3D printing technology to measure glucose and lactate levels in sweat samples. 

BITS Pilani, a leading institute of higher education, has unveiled a revolutionary technology for detecting and managing diabetes. A team of scientists at the institute has used 3D printing technology and made a portable system device to detect diabetes. It helps to analyse and evaluate the level of glucose and lactate in the body through sweat samples.'¯ 

In an interview, Professor Sanket Goel of BITS Pilani Institute said that the portable device is created with a combination of graphene-based electrodes, a CO2 laser, and 3D printing.'¯ 

'œThis system's non-invasive nature removes the need for blood samples to assess glucose levels. While it can also function with blood samples, the real innovation lies in its ability to detect lactate concentration using sweat samples,' said Prof. Goel.  

He explained further that the device operates based on Electrochemiluminescence (ECL). When the device detects sweating as an input, it sends out an electrical signal that starts a chemical reaction that produces light as an output. By measuring the light intensity, the device precisely detects lactate concentration.  

The device can be easily connected to smartphones, eliminating the need for blood tests to detect glucose levels. It uses sweat samples to measure lactate concentration. To measure lactate concentrations accurately, which is essential for successful treatment, the researchers used machine learning. 

As per the scientists, the device would be an affordable tool for managing diabetes because the estimated cost per unit in bulk production will be Rs 300-400. Now, the researchers are working on making a wearable version of the device that will allow continuous monitoring.  

Established in 1964, the Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS), Pilani, has partnered with various healthcare and technology organisations lately. Last year, BITS Pilani and CitiusTech, a consulting solutions provider, collaborated to upskill the latter's technology professionals in data science and analytics. 

The Integrated Learning Programs offered by the institute are intended for pharmaceutical and healthcare organisations. To spearhead transformation projects and keep the company future-ready, they are dedicated to developing the next generation of healthcare professionals and business leaders. 

Besides, there have a lot of technology advancements been introduced lately to detect and cure diabetes in India. For example, Roche Diabetes Care India has announced that Accu-Check Active, a blood glucose monitoring device, is now being manufactured in India. The aim is to reduce the market time and increase the accessibility of the product to the people living with diabetes.   

Furthermore, IIT Bhilai, Shiv Nadar Institution of Eminence (Delhi NCR), and Shri Rawatpura Sarkar Institute of Pharmacy (Chhattisgarh) have collaborated to develop a novel insulin-delivery platform. The hydrogel-based technology can release insulin in response to elevated blood glucose levels.   

Further, Predictmedix AI too unveiled an advanced technology to screen non-invasive diabetes using artificial intelligence (AI). As the number of diabetes cases is increasing in India, this initiative helps to redefine current practices for early detection and manage the high prevalence of chronic conditions.   


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