This electrochemical diagnostic tool uses carbon nanotubes to diagnose an upper respiratory infection in 30 seconds.
IEEE Member Mohammad Abdolahad led a team of undergraduate students and post-doctoral candidates at the University of Tehran that developed a non-invasive, electrochemical diagnostic system. Called the ROS [reactive oxygen species] Detector in Sputum Sample (RDSS), the test screens for respiratory inflammation in real-time and doesn’t require a medical professional to swab for the specimen. ROS are reactive chemical species that contain oxygen and can severely damage DNA, RNA, and proteins. This tool can determine the presence of ROS produced by respiratory inflammation.
The ROS test is done by taking a sample of the patient’s sputum. [The patient takes a deep breath and holds it in for five seconds. She then slowly breathes out and repeats these steps until she coughs up sputum.] The patient then spits the sputum into a falcon tube [a plastic cup].
Each individual sample is tested using the RDSS probe. The doctor [puts] the probe into the sample and the results are [displayed] on the monitor after 30 seconds.
A real-time ROS-based respiratory inflammation warning system during the pandemic could help control the spread of the virus. It can [also] be used as a support system to help determine the severity of respiratory inflammatory diseases based on ROS levels in the patient’s sputum culture.