. Earth Science News .

Device invented to rapidly detect infectious disease
by Staff Writers
Knoxville TN (SPX) Mar 19, 2012

File image courtesy AFP.

Infectious diseases can spread very rapidly, so quickly identifying them can be crucial to stopping an epidemic. However, current testing for such diseases can take hours and days. But not for much longer.

Jayne Wu, associate professor of computer science and electrical engineering at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and Shigetoshi Eda, associate professor of Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries at the UT Institute of Agriculture Center for Wildlife Health, have developed a portable device that can be used onsite to detect infectious diseases, pathogens as well as physiological conditions in people and animals.

"Time is of the essence in treating infectious diseases," said Wu. "This device has the potential to save a lot of lives by saving time in detection. It also saves a lot of money as it is cheaper to detect diseases than the system that is currently being used since we do not have to send them to a lab and have the sample be scrutinized by technicians."

The device can be used by any health care professional, anywhere. All that's needed is a droplet of blood to place on a microchip within the device.

The microchip is treated with disease-specific antigens-a toxin or other foreign substance that induces an immune response in the body-and captures disease-specific antibodies in the blood. If the antigens and antibodies match, then the device tells the health care provider that the patient or animal is infected.

This happens in a matter of minutes. So far the device has been used to detect tuberculosis in humans and wild animals, as well as Johne's disease in cattle.

"Johne's disease is highly prevalent in this country and is causing more than $200 million of annual losses to the U.S. dairy industry," said Eda. "Since there is no practical treatment for the disease, early diagnosis is critically important for disease control in dairy farms. This, in turn, helps farmers' business and the milk supply."

The scientists say they expect the device to be expanded to detect various diseases and physiological conditions. For instance, the researchers predict it could be useful in diagnosing Alzheimer's disease and cancer.

Their recent development indicated the device could detect pathogens in food materials. The device also could be valuable for applications in disaster relief, biodefense or disease outbreaks.

Wu and Eda recently received $15,000 from the UT Research Foundation to assist in further developing their technology to improve its positioning for licensing and commercialization. The scientists say they have industry interested in taking their invention to market.

Related Links
University of Tennessee at Knoxville
Epidemics on Earth - Bird Flu, HIV/AIDS, Ebola

Get Our Free Newsletters Via Email
Buy Advertising Editorial Enquiries


. Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Post-exposure antibody treatment protects primates from Ebola, Marburg viruses
Washington DC (SPX) Mar 16, 2012
Army scientists have demonstrated, for the first time, that antibody-based therapies can successfully protect monkeys from the deadly Ebola and Marburg viruses. In addition, the animals were fully protected even when treatment was administered two days post-infection, an accomplishment unmatched by any experimental therapy for these viruses to date. The work appears in this week's electronic edi ... read more

Australia braces for cyclone, floods

China iron mine accident kills 13

Manga artist back in the frame after Japan disasters

Butterfly molecule may aid quest for nuclear clean-up technology

China writers seek $8 mln from Apple in piracy row

News outlets losing ground to tech rivals: report

NASA and CSA Robotic Operations Advance Satellite Servicing

Russia May Sink Satellite Salvage Plan For Antarctic Internet Connection

Tonga in mourning as king dies aged 63

EU seeks to crack down on shark finning

Nitrate in drinking water poses health risks for rural Californians

Unexpected Crustacean Diversity Discovered in Northern Freshwater Ecosystems

China to conduct Arctic expedition

S. Korean, Russian scientists bid to clone mammoth

NASA Finds Thickest Parts of Arctic Ice Cap Melting Faster

Greenland icesheet more vulnerable than thought to warming

Carrefour forced to shut China outlet over expired meats

CDC study shows outbreaks linked to imported foods increasing

China firm sacks four over diseased ducks scandal

Century later, US cherry blossoms coup for Japan

Panic leaves 45 injured in Philippine quake

Santorini: The Ground is Moving Again in Paradise

Australia floods report may pave way for class action

Tropical Storm Irina kills three in Mozambique:official

Guinea-Bissau army denies involvement in assassination

GBissau ex-military intelligence officer killed: sources

Algeria conflict shapes US military strategy

Ethiopia says it has attacked Eritrean military base

Princeton scientists identify neural activity sequences that help form memory, decision-making

Self-centered kids? Blame their immature brains

Strong scientific evidence that eating berries benefits the brain

What have we got in common with a gorilla?

Memory Foam Mattress Review

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News


The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2012 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement