November 23, 2009

Of Mice and Men: Bombay Version

In mice; an implantable glucose bio-sensor develped by the Indian Institute of Technology.

Once injected, the bio-sensor would help monitor blood sugar levels for up to six months using an external hand-held device.

“India is poised to become the diabetes capital of the world. Developing a sensor that is non-invasive is the need of the hour,” said Professor Rohit Srivastava, Department of Biosciences and Bioengineering, IIT-B.

Most blood sugar monitoring methods involve pricking the fingertip to draw blood. IIT-B’s bio-sensor, called a smart tattoo, appears as just a dot in the skin when injected. Using near-infrared waves — which have shorter wavelengths like those used by the television remote control — emitted by the hand-held device, the patient can get his blood sugar count.

“The bio-sensor with a dye-attached glucose receptor will attract the glucose present in the fluid, send signals to the device and record the count,” said Srivastava adding that the device would work for any demographic region and for any type of diabetes.

A four-year effort, the research has reached the animal trial stage and the biosensors are being currently tested on mice.

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