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Healthy smartphone innovation

Friday, 10 February 2012 | By Michelle Hammond

start-up-idea-mobile-blood-testScientists are working on a smartphone that can provide a diagnosis for our illnesses from the comfort of an armchair.

 

Researchers at Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology say it could give an instant diagnosis from just a drop of blood or saliva on a phone’s touchscreen.

 

The technology was developed on the basis of the touchscreen’s capacity to detect minute electrical signals generated by a fingertip’s touch.

 

Doctor Hyun Gyu Park says his team’s research will enable mobile phones to diagnose diseases ranging from cancer to diabetes.

 

“We have confirmed that [touch screens] are able to recognise DNA molecules with nearly 100% accuracy just as large, conventional medical equipment can,” the professor says.

 

Since no one would put blood or urine on a touch screen, the sample would be placed on a strip, which would then be fed into the phone through what Park refers to as an “entrance point”.

 

“The location and concentration of the sample would be recognised the same way the touch of the finger is recognised,” he says.

 

Given consumers’ increasing reliance on their mobile phones, what else might they be used for to improve our health and wellbeing?