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Portable smartphone attachment can detect viruses, bacteria & single nanoparticles

Discussion in 'Other Health News and Research' started by Waverunner, Sep 22, 2013.

  1. Waverunner

    Waverunner Senior Member

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    The fact, that this device (with the help of your smartphone) can help to detect bacteria, viruses and nanoparticles is just outstanding and great. The most people who really care about CFS are those who either are directly or indirectly affected by it. Patient and doctor driven diagnostics could be one major step towards solving the CFS puzzle. The big question is, how expensive this device will be.



    http://newsroom.ucla.edu/portal/ucla/ucla-researchers-smartphone-microscope-248254.aspx

    Your smartphone now can see what the naked eye cannot: A single virus and bits of material less than one-thousandth of the width of a human hair.

    Aydogan Ozcan, a professor of electrical engineering and bioengineering at the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, and his team have created a portable smartphone attachment that can be used to perform sophisticated field testing to detect viruses and bacteria without the need for bulky and expensive microscopes and lab equipment. The device weighs less than half a pound.

    "This cellphone-based imaging platform could be used for specific and sensitive detection of sub-wavelength objects, including bacteria and viruses and therefore could enable the practice of nanotechnology and biomedical testing in field settings and even in remote and resource-limited environments," Ozcan said. "These results also constitute the first time that single nanoparticles and viruses have been detected using a cellphone-based, field-portable imaging system."

    The new research, published on Sept. 9 in the American Chemical Society's journal ACS Nano, comes on the heels of Ozcan's other recent inventions, including a cellphone camera–enabled sensor for allergens in food products and a smart phone attachment that can conduct common kidney tests.

    Capturing clear images of objects as tiny as a single virus or a nanoparticle is difficult because the optical signal strength and contrast are very low for objects that are smaller than the wavelength of light.

    In the ACS Nano paper, Ozcan details a fluorescent microscope device fabricated by a 3-D printer that contains a color filter, an external lens and a laser diode. The diode illuminates fluid or solid samples at a steep angle of roughly 75 degrees. This oblique illumination avoids detection of scattered light that would otherwise interfere with the intended fluorescent image.

    Using this device, which attaches directly to the camera module on a smartphone, Ozcan's team was able to detect single human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) particles. HCMV is a common virus that can cause birth defects such as deafness and brain damage and can hasten the death of adults who have received organ implants, who are infected with the HIV virus or whose immune systems otherwise have been weakened. A single HCMV particle measures about 150–300 nanometers; a human hair is roughly 100,000 nanometers thick.

    In a separate experiment, Ozcan's team also detected nanoparticles — specially marked fluorescent beads made of polystyrene — as small as 90–100 nanometers.

    To verify these results, researchers in Ozcan's lab used other imaging devices, including a scanning electron microscope and a photon-counting confocal microscope. These experiments confirmed the findings made using the new cellphone-based imaging device.

    Ozcan is the principal investigator on the research. The first author of ACS Nano the paper is Qingshan Wei, a postdoctoral researcher in Ozcan's lab and at UCLA's California NanoSystems Institute (CNSI), where Ozcan is associate director. Other co-authors include Hangfei Qi and Ting-Ting Wu of the UCLA Department of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology; Wei Luo, Derek Tseng, Zhe Wan and Zoltan Gorocs of the UCLA Electrical Engineering Department; So Jung Ki of the UCLA Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry; Laurent Bentolila of CNSI and the UCLA Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry; and Ren Sun of the UCLA Department of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology and CNSI.

    For more information on the Ozcan Research Group, visit http://org.ee.ucla.edu/ Ozcan is a founder of the mobile microanalysis startup company Holomic LLC, which seeks to commercialize imaging and sensing technologies licensed from the UCLA Office of Intellectual Property and Industry Sponsored Research
    .
    Funding support for the Ozcan Research Group comes from Nokia University Research Funding, the Army Research Office, the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the Office of Naval Research and the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers.

    The UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, established in 1945, offers 28 academic and professional degree programs and has an enrollment of more than 5,000 students. The school's distinguished faculty are leading research to address many of the critical challenges of the 21st century, including renewable energy, clean water, health care, wireless sensing and networking, and cyber-security. Ranked among the top 10 engineering schools at public universities nationwide, the school is home to eight multimillion-dollar interdisciplinary research centers in wireless sensor systems, wireless health, nanoelectronics, nanomedicine, renewable energy, customized computing, the smart grid, and the Internet, all funded by federal and private agencies and individual donors.
  2. Sparrowhawk

    Sparrowhawk Senior Member

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    What I would like is the blood test module that plugs into the smartphone and instantly gives you the entire profile, all the usual important nutrient and cell levels, plus pathogens.

    Well, a guy can dream, right?
    maryb, MeSci, leela and 2 others like this.
  3. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Great info. Thanks.

    Not that I understand how the zapper works or if it works but could this technology assist
    in making an effective zapper ? tx .. x
  4. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    This device that turns your smartphone into a microscope that can see viruses and bacteria is already available as a commercial product. Not sure of the price, but the manufactures are talking about the cost of the device being as low as $10 once in mass production, due to its simplicity.

    Manufacture's website:

    Holomic LUCAS smartphone microscope

    They say that their HRDR-200 device is available for sale globally.

    Not sure how this smartphone microscope can see viruses though. Bacteria yes, but viruses? Viruses are much smaller than bacteria, and viruses cannot be seen even with the best optical microscopes, only electron microscopes.
  5. Sparrowhawk

    Sparrowhawk Senior Member

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    I appears that the scope (at least as demoed in the video) is really for "reading" output from strip reaction test strips, not for looking at pathogens themselves, and they are marketing it for immunological tests at this point. So the output is a visual calculation based on some algorithm for each specific test strip's test.

    Not bad, but not quite what we are looking for yet.

    Did I post this? Forgive if a repeat: http://www.theranos.com/
    Disruptive technology to do wide ranging blood tests with only one drop of blood, coming soon to ... your walgreens.
    http://singularityhub.com/2013/11/1...oster-child-of-med-tech-and-its-in-walgreens/
    xchocoholic, Valentijn and Waverunner like this.
  6. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Wow, that Theranos system looks amazing — if their tests are accurate.

    The current generation of home test kits are usually inaccurate. I while ago I bought a home test kit for measuring thyroid hormone, and this home test showed I was hypothyroid (low thyroid hormone). I then went to see my doctor, and he looked at the result, but told me that these home test kits that you buy online are not very accurate. He then got me to do a proper laboratory thyroid hormone blood test, and sure enough, the proper tested showed my thyroid hormone was fine, whereas this home test had said my thyroid hormone was too low.

    Yet these manufactures of home test kits are happy to sell you their products, even though they know they are inaccurate.

    So the crucial thing with the Theranos system will be its accuracy.

    Is Theranos a home system, though, or is it only performed in-store, in the pharmacies within Walgreens stores?

    But it would certainly be fantastic if Theranos was an accurate system — the Theranos test prices are incredibly low: most tests are in $3 to $10 range, even the virus tests.
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2013
    xchocoholic and Sparrowhawk like this.
  7. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    I think you are right. The HRDR-200 device is not a microscope. Though the company do seem to be working on their lens-free microscope: at the bottom of this page, they show some pictures of microbes taken with both a conventional microscope, and a lens-free microscope.
    Sparrowhawk likes this.

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