Wearables are being widely researched for monitoring individual’s health and wellbeing. Current generation wearable devices sense an individual’s physiological data such as heart rate, respiration, electrodermal activity, and EEG, but lack in sensing their biological counterparts, which drive the majority of an individual’s physiological signals. On the other hand, biosensors for detecting biochemical markers are currently limited to one-time use, are non-continuous, and don’t provide flexibility in choosing which biomarker they sense. We present “wearable lab on body,” a platform for active continuous monitoring of human biomarkers from the biological fluid.
Our platform contains both digital sensors such as IMU for activity recognition, as well as an automated system for continuous sampling of biomarkers from saliva by leveraging already existing paper-based biochemical sensors. The platform could aid with longitudinal studies of biomarkers and early diagnosis of diseases
Looking at the current literature, most of the biochemical sensing platforms lack the ability to monitor context and activity of the individual, whereas the digital sensing platforms can only sense physiological signals but are not able to sense the molecular dynamics of the human body. Here, we present a vision for the future bio-digital wearable device that bridges the gap between biochemical sensing and digital sensing. Our approach consists of four modules: biochemical sensors, digital sensors, mobile computing module, and feedback modality.
The main advantage of such a bio-digital wearable platform is that it enables the continuous monitoring of behavior and wellbeing of the individual in real-world settings. Using digital sensors such as IMU and GPS, the system can recognize the context of the individual regarding location and activity, while physiological sensing such as EEG could help the system to recognize the cognitive performance of the individual in terms of attention and emotion. The biological sensors could help quantify the molecular response of the body, for example by measuring changes in cortisol for stress. The information from both the biochemical and digital sensors can contextualize one another, and provide insights on the effects of an individual’s behavior, which in turn can be used to develop healthier lifestyles. With the closed loop system, the platform could also provide real-time feedback to the individual when recognizing unhealthy behavior.
Our platform is designed to continuously sample saliva from the individual and analyze it using a roll of multiplexed biochemical sensors. A small portion of the sensor is exposed to the acquired saliva at a point in time. Once the saliva reacts with a biochemical sensor, the RGB color sensor on the device reads the output and converts the value into the concentration of the biomarker based on the color-concentration model. The used sensor is then switched with a new sensor in the roll. The platform consists of three main components: a paper-based biochemical sensor cartridge, a saliva acquisition and sensing module, and a smartphone application to store and analyze the data.
May 4, 2019