Can a small gadget and smartphone app replace a medical laboratory? Of course not - just simplify, speed up and reduce the cost of the analysis of the three most common samples: saliva, urine and blood. Such a device was developed at the University of Illinois and costs only $ 550 per copy.
The analyzer technology is based on a simple principle: when the composition of a liquid changes, it changes its color, becomes more or less transparent, etc. It remains only to check the detailed image with the standard and make an express test. In some cases, a dye is added to the medium under study, which reacts to the presence of certain substances - this reaction is fixed by the device.
The analyzer looks like a smartphone attachment with cartridges that hold fluid samples. With the help of the white light of the phone's flash or its own LED backlight, the analyzes are "shone through", and the result is captured by the smartphone camera. The rest is a matter of technology - select the required type of test in the application and start processing the image according to the appropriate algorithm.
The creators of the analyzer use the most common tests in American medicine and are confident that on this basis it is possible to develop software for performing any similar analyzes with liquids. Not only in the interests of medicine - it is a quick way to check the quality of food, find drugs, take samples of groundwater, etc.