Technological advancements have played their part in improving medicine and will continue to do so. Research is rapidly being conducted to leverage technological advancements in order to further the cause of medicine and we can be sure of great things in the future. Things like a USB stick that’s capable of performing an HIV test, one has been created by scientists based in the United Kingdom.

Scientists at the Imperial College London have created this device in collaboration with the technology firm DNA Electronics. The stick only requires one drop of blood to measure HIV-1 levels. It creates an electrical signal which when fed into a computer or handheld device can provide the results.

This disposable test can easily be used by HIV patients to monitor their own treatment and it will also have patients located in remote regions of the world where standard tests may not be available.

Published first in the Scientific Reports journal, the USB stick is very accurate and it can provide test results in under 30 minutes. That’s much faster than the conventional way of sending blood samples to a lab and then waiting on the results, a process that can take up to three days.

The stick had a 95 percent accuracy ratio in the 991 blood samples that it was used to test. The average time for a result was 21 minutes. This technology is in early stages right now but it’s only going to get better down the road.

The scientists are now looking into using the same method for detecting other viruses like hepatitis.

Filed in Medical.. Source: gizmodo

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