Sensors that can be attached to the skin and can detect what is in the sweat were developed by a research group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
These skin sensors could be very useful in the future to monitor health or facilitate diagnosis without resorting to invasive methods, such as blood sampling, especially in real-time. The study, published in Science Advances, describes how these sensors can monitor the speed of sweat as well as the electrolytes and metabolites it contains.
The new sensor was or was already tested on volunteers while they were doing physical exercises and in others where the sweating was chemically induced. The sensor counts on a microscopic spiral tube that absorbs sweat from the skin and is able to trace, through microfluidics, the speed with which sweat moves as well as other information such as its quantity and in general the sweating rate of the subject.
The hope is that sweat sensors like these can replace the analysis by taking blood to keep different pathologies under control even if as regards diabetes, as reported by Mallika Bariya, a student at UC Berkeley and another author of the study, it has not yet been shown that there is a universal correlation between sweat levels and blood glucose levels.
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