At the moment, the technology is much more advanced than that of years ago. Not only can many of the new devices help in industrial and office work but also everyday life. In the case of medical science, technological innovation plays a major role.
In the past decades, the researchers have successfully made different tests and machines to detect different health conditions. Additionally, many of these are also a part of treatment and prevention plans for many diseases.
Now, there is a focus on making devices to detect a number of issues more accessible. For instance, like blood pressure monitors, scientists are trying to come up with portable machines that also give accurate readings.
At the same time, a part of medical literature focuses on how the already present technology can help in this situation. Perhaps the biggest example of this is cellphones/smartphones. This is because every other person from every age group owns a cellphone. It is also easy to use and understand for the majority.
A new study adds to this very side of research. The study, by researchers at the University of Arizona in Tuscon, shows how cellphones can potentially detect the virus which is norovirus. There were three leading authors of the study Soo Chung, Jeong-Yeol Yoon, and Kelly A. Reynolds.
The findings of the study appear in the journal ACS Omega. The research was also a part of the American Chemical Society Fall 2019 National Meeting & Exposition.
Norovirus Can Be Detected Using Smartphone and Paper
Norovirus is among the most highly contagious virus. It is mainly responsible for gastroenteritis infections in people. Statistically, there are around 19-21 million cases of gastroenteritis in the United States alone making it the most common foodborne condition.
In addition, around 1.9 percent of the people end up in the hospital because of norovirus infections. Another 400,00 also have to visit the emergency wards.
The main problem with this virus is that even low levels of it can lead to issues. Around ten noroviruses are enough to cause an infection. Therefore, looking for a faster and simpler way to detect it as soon as possible was important.
Currently, the conventional methods of detecting the virus include using lasers, microscopes, and even spectrometers. In the new research, the researchers used along with water acting as microfluidic chips
This tendency of paper is due to its fibrous structure. Consequently, the liquid is able to flow without the aid of other chips.
Consequently, the researchers also incorporated fluorescent beads instead of going for the traditional method of light intensity measurements. When water is added to the paper chip, the antibodies on these beads will attack norovirus if it is present. This will create a clump that is also detectable using a cellphone microscope.
Additionally, the researchers also came up with an app that tells the number of norovirus in any of the samples. This can potentially hint to a future where detection of similar conditions can be made easier and faster in the future.