As per the report published in 2014, there were 422 million diabetic patients in the world. Unfortunately, this figure is expected to rise in the near future and in 2035, as per the report of the World Health Organization the total number of patients could reach 580 million. In order to cope up with this disease, patients have to continuously measure their level of glucose in the blood. So to test glucose level in blood patients often employ portable glycosometer which requires at least a drop of blood that should be put on glycosometer’s strip to have the result on the screen. Some of the patients test their sugar once a day. Others have to take this test more than once a day to monitor their level of sugar in the blood.
Tear Based Testing of Glucose in Blood
Process of pricking and then obtaining the drop of blood from patients is not only painful but also, it can cause infection. So to avoid pain and risk of infection scientist for several years are looking for safer alternatives. One such, alternative that has been recently created by USA and Brazilian scientists is a glass-based biosensor. It can measure the level of glucose in blood via tears of a person. This less invasive test for blood sugar uses the enzyme glucose oxidase in a person’s tear as identified by the biosensor installed in the goggle. This glass-based biosensor uses a common type of enzyme from patients’ tear which doesn’t require pricking and taking drop of blood. In this way, the patient would not feel any pain. Nor, he will be at risk of infection. Moreover, tears of the patient can also be used for other tests like the alcohol level.
Process of Testing Glucose in Blood
The glass-based biosensor was generated by the scientists of the University of São Paulo’s São Carlos Physics Institute in collaboration with the University of California’s Department of Nano-engineering. In order to make this glass-based biosensor to work patient ought to have a tear. Which is usually obtained by exposing the eye of a patient to an eye sensitive substance in order to stimulate the lachrymal gland that produces tears in eyes. Once a tear comes into contact with glucose oxidase then it changes the stream of electrons. It produces a signal. Which is processed and recorded by a device fitted in the arm of eyeglasses. This device afterward sends report to a computer or smartphone with which it was connected.
São Carlos Chemistry Institute
Laís Canniatti Brazaca, the researcher and physician at São Carlos Chemistry Institute and a co-researcher said:
“The concentrations of various metabolites in tears reflect concurrent blood levels, making them an attractive medium for non-invasive monitoring of physiological parameters”.
This less invasive method of testing glucose in blood would be helpful for several diabetic patients. Because they by employing this approach without any pain can check their sugar. Also, the patient would not run the risk of infection that might be caused by frequent prinking. Moreover, this method is expected to be less expensive because it would involve the onetime cost of purchasing an eyeglass. Which can be used for better vision. Also, it could assist people in testing other vital tests such as vitamins.