• The technology, which is at a proof-of-concept stage, could be used to monitor patients continuously without invasive procedures, as well as to monitor athletes’ performance or stress levels in soldiers and pilots. In this study, engineers focused on uric acid, which is a marker related to diabetes and to gout. Currently, the only way to monitor the levels of uric acid in a patient is to draw blood.
  • The electronic board of the device uses small chips that sense the output of the sensors, digitizes this output and then wirelessly transmits data to a smart phone, tablet or laptop. The entire electronic board occupies an area slightly larger than a U.S. penny.
  • The next step is to embed all the electronics inside the mouth guard so that it can actually be worn. Researchers also will have to test the materials used for the sensors and electronics to make sure that they are indeed completely biocompatible. The next iteration of the mouth guard is about a year out, Mercier estimates. The study was published in the journal Biosensors and Bioelectronics.

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