Smartphone camera test could diagnose a UTI within 30 minutes

Service Engineering

Evolving countries could have access to urinary tract infection (UTI) testing shortly, thanks to researchers from the University of Bath, who have developed a groundbreaking approach that could diagnose dangerous E.coli bacteria within thirty minutes, via a cheap, portable smartphone camera test.

The analysis is conducted through a sample of urine, passed over a plastic strip, containing antibodies capable of recognising E.coli Bacteria. The smartphone camera will then identify a change in color if the added enzyme binds with the E. coli bacteria. Then, the smartphone camera measures the concentration of E.coli in the sample. The researchers published their findings in the Biosensors and Bioelectronics journal.

“The University of Bath has developed an approach that could diagnose E.coli bacteria within thirty minutes, via a smartphone camera test.“

Research led and a member of Bath’s Department of Chemical Engineering, Dr. Nunu Reis, stated: “Currently bacterial infections in UTIs are confirmed via microbiological testing of a urine sample. That is accurate but time-consuming taking several days. We hope that giving medical professionals the ability to quickly rule in or rule out certain conditions will allow them to treat patients more quickly and help them make better decisions about the prescription of antibiotics.”

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