Infection testing is the key to longevity. testing more accessible and cheaper is especially important for people in rural areas of low-income countries, where clinics can be far away and expensive to travel to, notes Estefania Nunez-Bajo, PhD, also in the department of bioengineering and first author. If made available to patients, it could also be used to diagnose and monitor infections like UTIs, which often recur despite antibiotics.

“Monitoring infections at home could even help patients, with the help of their doctor, to personalize and tailor their antibiotic use to help reduce the growing problem of antibiotic resistance,” points out Nunez-Bajo.

Each lab-on-a-chip contains a DNA sensor, temperature detector, and heater to automate the testing process. A typical smartphone battery could power up to 35 tests on a single charge.

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