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A Needle-free Glucose Monitor?

Tuesday, 11 September 2012 11:24 AM

Good news for diabetics: German researchers have developed a blood sugar monitor that can measure glucose in sweat and tears. The invention may soon make painful daily needle pricks – required for current diabetes blood sugar tests – a thing of the past.
Type 1 diabetics typically check their glucose several times a day, by sticking themselves in the finger to draw a small bead of blood to be sure their sugar levels aren’t too high. Type 2 diabetics also use such monitors, but less regularly.
But a new monitor – engineered by the researchers at the Dutch medical technology firm Noviosens and developed at the Fraunhofer Institute for Microelectronic Circuits and Systems IMS in Germany – uses a tiny biosensor chip placed on a diabetic’s body that measures glucose levels continuously using tissue fluids, such as sweat or tears.
The measurement involves an electrochemical reaction that is activated with the aid of an enzyme to calculate blood glucose levels.
"It even has an integrated analog digital converter that converts the electrochemical signals into digital data," said Tom Zimmermann, business unit manager at IMS. The biosensor transmits the data wirelessly to a mobile receiver, so diabetics can keep a steady eye on their glucose levels.
"In the past, you used to need a circuit board the size of a half-sheet of paper. And you also had to have a driver. But even these things are no longer necessary with our new sensor."
He added that the new biochips could be adapted to control an implanted miniature pump that, based on the glucose value measured, administers the precise amount of insulin a diabetic might need.

© HealthDay

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German researchers have developed a blood sugar monitor that measures glucose in sweat and tears.
Tuesday, 11 September 2012 11:24 AM
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