Navigation Links
New Sensors Stick to Organs to Monitor Health
Date:3/24/2010

Pliable electronic devices already tracking heart function in pigs, scientists say

WEDNESDAY, March 24 (HealthDay News) -- A new generation of flexible, miniaturized devices that stick onto organs promises better diagnosis and control of medical conditions ranging from heart problems to epilepsy, researchers report.

For example, "in the heart, we could do cardiac mapping and get rid of areas of arrhythmia much faster than is now done," explained study author Dr. Brian Litt, an associate professor of neurology and bioengineering at the University of Pennsylvania. "In the brain, we could treat movement orders and epilepsy with finer control than ever before."

The technology might also be useful in monitoring a variety of other organs, the team said.

The new technology uses electrodes flexible enough to stick and hold to wet human tissue -- "like putting a thin film of cellophane on the heart," Litt said, and small enough so that there can be 300 contacts per square centimeter of tissue.

Electronic medical devices such as pacemakers that are currently in use keep all their electronic circuits inside a container that is typically distant from the area being controlled or monitored.

In contrast, the systems now being tested in animals have wires running to hundreds or thousands of tiny electrodes that are magnitudes smaller than those seen in devices today.

One possible goal is a new kind of pacemaker that will allow for better control of abnormal heart rhythms. "We think we can find [arrhythmias] quicker, with a thin, larger flexible patch over the heart," Litt said. "We could measure rhythm all over the heart at one time."

The devices are being developed in a collaboration between physicians and engineers at the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Illinois and Northwestern University. They reported their findings in the March 24 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

"By integrating silicon transistors, we can combine signals and use fewer wires to connect these electrodes to external instruments," said Jonathan Viventi, a graduate student at the University of Pennsylvania, who is due to gain his doctorate next month and who leads a group developing the systems. Their report describes a device capable of measuring electrical activity in the hearts of pigs, animals often used in such research.

The device has more than 2,000 closely spaced electrodes that are flexible enough to fit around the curving surface of the heart, with electronics engineered to operate in the salty environment of body fluids.

"These are flexible electrodes for medical applications, where it is necessary to work with body tissues of irregular shape," Viventi said. "There are other devices with flexible displays. One prototype device can have a reader with a fold-up screen. We are trying to approach the microscopic dimensions that the body works in."

The devices are approaching the level where they might be commercially produced, Litt said. "We have done proof-of-principle testing in pig hearts and also are testing in the brains of other large animals," he said. "We may be able to create a new generation of devices that can map the brain so that we can see where disordered networks of brain cells are. We have other papers in process."

More information

There's more on the heart's electrical function at the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.



SOURCES: Brian Litt, M.D., associate professor, neurology and bioengineering; Jonathan Viventi, graduate student, both from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia; March 24, 2010, Science Translational Medicine


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Nanosensors Spot Early Signs of Cancer
2. ANT+ and Texas Instruments connect proven ultra low power sensors to smartphones
3. Carnegie Mellon will test ability of embedded sensors to detect onset of dementia, infirmity
4. Alternative chemicals ease safety concerns about nonstick, repellent coatings
5. Sticks and stones break bones, but this UH study may prevent it
6. Mail-Order May Help People Stick to Med Regimens
7. Med Students Often Fail to Report Needlestick Injuries
8. An inexpensive dipstick test for pesticides in foods
9. Top Reasons Those Get Fit Resolutions Dont Stick
10. Twinlab Launches New Omega-3 Powder in Single-Serving Stick Packs for Busy Parents and Their Kids
11. Risks of Kids Surgeries May Not Stick With Parents
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... payment industry today announced its strategic partnership with Connance, a healthcare industry ... The two companies’ proven, proprietary technology combine to provide health systems, hospitals ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... 2016 , ... TopConsumerReviews.com recently awarded their highest five-star rating to Best Buy ... in the United States and Canada wear eyeglasses. Once considered to be a purely ... make a fashion statement. Even celebrities use glasses as a way of creating an ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... Battle Creek, Michigan (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... ... abuse, joined as sponsor of the 2016 Cereal Festival and World’s Longest Breakfast Table ... held in honor of the city’s history as home to some of the world’s ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... PawPaws ... a new product that was developed to enhance the health of felines. The formula ... , The two main herbs in the PawPaws Cat Kidney Support Supplement ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... Lake Orion, Clarkston, Michigan (PRWEB) , ... June ... ... direction with respect to fertility once they have been diagnosed with endometriosis. These ... tolerable intercourse but they also require a comprehensive approach that can help for ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... June 24, 2016  Collagen Matrix, Inc., ("Collagen ... and manufacturing of collagen and mineral based medical ... that Bill Messer has joined the ... further leverage the growing portfolio of oral surgery, ... Bill joins the Collagen Matrix executive team ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016 ... the "Structural Electronics 2015-2025: Applications, Technologies, Forecasts" ... In-Mold Electronics, Smart Skin, Structural ... Structural electronics involves electronic and/or ... protective structures, replacing dumb structures such as vehicle ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the ... Tests" report to their offering. ... The World Market for Companion Diagnostics covers the ... analysis in the report includes the following: ... Kits) by Region (N. America, EU, ROW), 2015-2020 , ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: