Sunday, July 8, 2012

Now check your blood sugar in 10 seconds, for just Rs. 2

Diabetes patients monitoring glucose levels regularly will attest to the fact that testing strips — expensive and sometimes hard to get — are a downside. By the yearend, the sugar test could cost just Rs 2, take about 10 seconds and draw far less blood than the regular glucose meter.
Developed by Dr Suman Kapur, professor of biological sciences at BITS-Pilani, the new cellphone-sized blood sugar machine uses a capillary (narrow pipe) worth Rs 2 through which the blood is transmitted to the reading device. It will require 1,000 times less blood than a standard glucometer.

The device will undergo final evaluation by July 15 and is expected to be ready for mass production by December.
This low–cost rapid test will be a boon for India which plans to test five crore people for diabetes by the end of this year. India plans to screen all adult males above 30 years of age and pregnant women of all age groups for diabetes and hypertension in 100 districts across 21 states.

Now, India is home to over 61 million diabetics — an increase from 50.8 million last year. By 2030, India’s diabetes burden is expected to cross the 100 million mark. The country is also the largest contributor to regional mortality with 983,000 deaths attributable to the disease last year.

Dr. Suman Kapur said, Our device is as handy as a glucometer but with a different Chemistry. The major aim was to make a pocket sized, affordable glucose monitoring device. Diabetics are required to test their blood often, each time costing around Rs. 25. Our test will bring the cost down to Rs. 2. Also we will require just 1 or 2 picolitre of blood that means less than 1000 times blood comparing to standard glucometer.

Dr. Suman Kapur also explained the working of Machine. Once the finger pricked with a needle, red blood cells from the blood will be trapped and plasma will be allowed to pass, just like OSMOSIS, a process of chemistry. The machine will react at this moment and will give a color corresponding to glucose level.