A research team recently developed a portable lab powered by iPhone which can detect the presence of cancer with accuracy rate as high as 99 percent.
Apple draws all the attention with its activities indicating it has high hopes for its hardware, mainly the Apple watch and iPhone, to make a difference in the health industry while others stay out of the limelight. Though that is not the case anymore. A research team from Washington State University is outdoing the greatest developments in health sector till date under the leadership of the assistant professor Lei Li. Biotech is pacing up quick and nothing else can be a greater proof for that. A portable laboratory that detects cancer instantly while needing just a smartphone to power it and keep it running.
Washington State University’s website announces the achievement mentioning how the lab has unpredictable accuracy. It is able to analyze up to eight different samples at once. Moreover, Li says the portable laboratory is able to detect human interleukin-6 (IL-6). That is a biomarker for a number of fatal chronic lung, prostate, liver, breast and epithelial cancers. Basically, It works with a spectrometer which does all the analysis. It identifies the type of chemicals present and the amount in which it’s there. This is done by measuring the light spectrum.
“With our eight channel spectrometer, we can put eight different samples to do the same test, or one sample in eight different wells to do eight different tests. This increases our device’s efficiency,” said Li, who has filed a provisional patent for the work.
“The spectrometer would be especially useful in clinics and hospitals that have a large number of samples without on-site labs, or for doctors who practice abroad or in remote areas,” he said. “They can’t carry a whole lab with them. They need a portable and efficient device.”
Something US should be proud of
The development stands out of the crowd with its out of the line abilities. Other smartphone spectrometers are out there and therefore the lab being ‘iPhone powered’ is not a huge deal. Though measuring up to 8 samples at once is what’s special about this particular one. This capability gives it the accuracy that’s drawing all eyes toward it. It is going to be a big step forward in cancer detection and research throughout the globe. The lab has great portability so it will likely be used in remote areas where such amenities are tough to come by as well. That is surely something US should be proud of.
Back when it was not fully trusted to get it into real world situations, it was used with standard lab-controlled samples. However, now they are applying it in actual cases and it’s giving brilliant results. The team did the primary tests with an iPhone 5 but any smartphone can do as good as iPhone in this case. Only they will have to adjust the version of the device with other phones. Overall, an iPhone gives off the best results here. The diagram above provides a clearer look at the working of the machine.
Found the post intriguing? Check out more information about the device. Read it in the journal Biosensors and Bioelectronics.