Monday, February 1, 2016

Wearable biosensors analyse your sweat and send health reports to smartphone in real time

Wearable sensors is the new hot topics now.  Earlier in this blog I shared how the smartphone and innovative wearable technology will change the future of healthcare industry.  A recent publication in Nature magazine reveals the true existence of a wearable sensors, which can analyze body biochemistry from your sweat and send the report to your smartphone in real time.  They call it as wearable sweat sensors.
Sweat Sensor in a flexible plastic wristband : photo credit Nature

This is a flexible plastic patches, which can read the molecular composition of sweat and send the real time analysis report to a smartphone. It could provide an alarm that you need to take some medication or you are getting dehydrated and needs to drinks some water.

Several labs have been developing sensors for sweat, which contains a multitude of electrolytes and metabolites — the final products of the body’s biological processes (for example, the lactic acid that builds up after exercise). But these sensors have tended to measure only one component of sweat at a time, and generally cannot transmit their measurements in real-time.

Perspiration on your phone

Putting together existing advances in wearables technology, Javey’s team made the sensors from a flexible electronics board joined to a flexible printed plastic sensor array, which can detect glucose, lactate, sodium, potassium and body temperature. When the sensors come into contact with sweat they generate electrical signals that are amplified and filtered, and then calibrated using skin temperature. The data are then wirelessly transmitted to a smartphone.

Challenges and Conclusion

There are still many challenges to overcome before you can expect to buy a sweat sensor incorporated into a wearable fitness band. For one thing, scientists aren’t used to working with such tiny quantities of fluid, and people aren’t always sweating.

Sweat sensors will never be as accurate as blood tests, which are the “gold standard”. Our bodies closely control the molecular composition of our blood, but the content of our sweat is more variable and is sometimes influenced by microbes on our skin — so the medical relevance of the information that sweat provides will need to be rigorously tested. However, sweat does have an advantage: taking blood samples with a needle is not a practical means of assessing health on a minute-by-minute basis.

In time, the researchers hope to incorporate more sensors that might provide an even deeper picture of what’s happening in the body. Some research suggesting that certain biomarkers in sweat may correlate with symptoms in people with depression.  By looking at those other chemicals we may be able to get information about the mental health of an individual.

Wearable Sweat Sensor A real time Analyzer of your body biochemistry

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Zika virus is spread to people through mosquito bites. The most common symptoms of Zika virus disease are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting from several days to a week. Severe disease requiring hospitalization is uncommon.
In May 2015, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) issued an alert regarding the first confirmed Zika virus infection in Brazil. The outbreak in Brazil led to reports of Guillain-Barre syndrome and pregnant women giving birth to babies with birth defects and poor pregnancy outcomes.
Where has Zika virus been found?
Prior to 2015, Zika virus outbreaks have occurred in areas of Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific Islands.In May 2015, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) issued an alert regarding the first confirmed Zika virus infections in Brazil.Currently, outbreaks are occurring in many countries.Zika virus will continue to spread and it will be difficult to determine how the virus will spread over time.
Zika in the United States and its territories:
No locally transmitted Zika cases have been reported in the continental United States, but cases have been reported in returning travelers.Locally transmitted Zika virus has been reported in the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.With the recent outbreaks, the number of Zika cases among travelers visiting or returning to the United States will likely increase.These imported cases could result in local spread of the virus in some areas of the United States.
Countries and territories with active Zika virus transmission


  • Barbados
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Colombia
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • El Salvador
  • French Guiana
  • Guadeloupe
  • Guatemala
  • Guyana
  • Haiti
  • Honduras
  • Martinique
  • Mexico
  • Panama
  • Paraguay
  • Puerto Rico
  • Saint Martin
  • Suriname
  • U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Venezuela


  • Samoa


  • Cape Verde
  • Privention
  • No vaccine exists to prevent Zika virus disease (Zika).
  • Prevent Zika by avoiding mosquito bites (see below).
  • Mosquitoes that spread Zika virus bite mostly during the daytime.
  • Mosquitoes that spread Zika virus also spread dengue and chikungunya viruses.
  • When traveling to countries where Zika virus or other viruses spread by mosquitoes are found, take the following steps:
    • Use insect repellents
      • When used as directed, insect repellents are safe and effective for everyone, including pregnant and nursing women.
      • Most insect repellents can be used on children.  Do not use products containing oil of lemon eucalyptus in children under the age of three years.
      • Repellents containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, and some oil of lemon eucalyptus and para-menthane-diol products provide long lasting protection.
      • If you use both sunscreen and insect repellent, apply the sunscreen first and then the repellent.
      • Do not spray insect repellent on the skin under your clothing.
      • Treat clothing with permethrin or purchase permethrin-treated clothing.
      • Always follow the label instructions when using insect repellent or sunscreen.
    • When weather permits, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
    • Use air conditioning or window/door screens to keep mosquitoes outside. If you are not able to protect yourself from mosquitoes inside your home or hotel, sleep under a mosquito bed net.
    • Help reduce the number of mosquitoes inside and outside your home or hotel room by emptying standing water from containers such as flowerpots or buckets.
    Sick with Chikungunya, Dengue, or Zika?  Protect yourself and others from mosquito bites during the first week of illness.
    If you have Zika, protect others from getting sick
    • During the first week of infection, Zika virus can be found in the blood and passed from an infected person to another mosquito through mosquito bites. An infected mosquito can then spread the virus to other people.
    • To help prevent others from getting sick, avoid mosquito bites during the first week of illness.


  • About 1 in 5 people infected with Zika virus become ill (i.e., develop Zika).
  • The most common symptoms of Zika are fever, rash, joint pain, or conjunctivitis (red eyes). Other common symptoms include muscle pain and headache. The incubation period (the time from exposure to symptoms) for Zika virus disease is not known, but is likely to be a few days to a week.
  • The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting for several days to a week.
  • Zika virus usually remains in the blood of an infected person for a few days but it can be found longer in some people.
  • Severe disease requiring hospitalization is uncommon.
  • Deaths are rare.


  • The symptoms of Zika are similar to those of dengueand chikungunya, diseases spread through the same mosquitoes that transmit Zika.
  • See your healthcare provider if you develop the symptoms described above and have visited an area where Zika is found.
  • If you have recently traveled, tell your healthcare provider when and where you traveled.
  • Your healthcare provider may order blood tests to look for Zika or other similar viruses like dengue or chikungunya.


  • No vaccine or medications are available to prevent or treat Zika infections.
  • Treat the symptoms:
    • Get plenty of rest
    • Drink fluids to prevent dehydration
    • Take medicines, such as acetaminophen or paracetamol, to relieve fever and pain
    • Do not take aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like ibuprofen and naproxen. Aspirin and NSAIDs should be avoided until dengue can be ruled out to reduce the risk of hemorrhage (bleeding). If you are taking medicine for another medical condition, talk to your healthcare provider before taking additional medication.
  • If you have Zika, avoid mosquito bites for the first week of your illness.
    • During the first week of infection, Zika virus can be found in the blood and passed from an infected person to another mosquito through mosquito bites.
    • An infected mosquito can then spread the virus to other people.

Zika Virus outbreak :Know more

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