Revolutionizing Healthcare: NIST Develops Affordable Glucose Monitoring Method Using Regular Cell Phone Magnetometer

Scientists create innovative method to monitor blood sugar levels with smartphone technology

Recently, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announced that its researchers have developed a new technique to accurately measure glucose concentrations in blood using the magnetometer on a regular cell phone. This innovative method could offer an affordable and easy-to-produce alternative to current testing methods.

Most modern cell phones are equipped with a magnetometer that can detect the Earth’s magnetic field for navigation. However, researchers at NIST discovered that this same magnetometer can be used to measure various molecules and biomarkers in blood. In a proof of concept study, they attached a small well containing a solution (instead of blood) and a strip of hydrogel to a cell phone. The hydrogel, a porous material that expands in water, was embedded with tiny magnetic particles that react to glucose concentrations or pH levels by expanding or contracting.

The smart hydrogels are affordable and easy to produce, making them potential candidates for inexpensive test kits that can be attached to a cell phone for glucose monitoring. As the hydrogel particles change in size, they move the magnetic particles closer to or farther away from the magnetometer in the cell phone, altering the magnetic field strength. pH levels can indicate different disorders in the body.

The NIST team stated that this technology is based solely on a smartphone’s capabilities and could offer a low-cost alternative to current testing methods. The study results were recently published in the journal Nature Communications. This innovative method has the potential to revolutionize healthcare by making accurate glucose monitoring more accessible and affordable than ever before.

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