It can also reveal injurious and risky consumption, such as repeated weekend binges. The method is quicker, cheaper, and more accurate than present variants, which makes it interesting to primary care clinics, workplaces, and other venues where it is important to carry out health checks.
"People with incipient alcohol abuse often try to obscure their problems, both from themselves and from others. This makes it important to uncover problems in time. And for pilots, chauffeurs, and other vocational groups alcohol abuse can directly jeopardize their ability to perform their jobs," says Arthur Varga, the researcher in applied biochemistry at the Lund University Faculty of Engineering who developed the method.
Varga's work started with a doctoral dissertation in medicine. There he analyzed a newly discovered biomarker (changes in lipid molecules in the blood) that only occurs if there is ethanol in the blood. He then developed a so-called high-pressure liquid chromatographic method that is in use today at the University Hospital in Lund.
But since the method is rather cumbersome, with long analysis times for each sample, and since it generates waste in the form of organic solvents, after his dissertation he has been studying other ways of detecting and measuring the occurrence of phosphatidyl ethanol, as the biomarker is called. It turns out that a so-called capillary electrophoresis (CE)-based method offers many advantages.
"With some simplification, it's a matter of emptying a biological material, normally a drop of blood, of its fats. It is then injected into and separated in a CE unit. The results appear within five minutes. Present methods are not only expensive and time-consuming but also sometimes produce faulty test results," says Arthur Varga. He estimates that his research could be commercialized in one or two years.
About 10-15 percent of the population accounts for 50 percent of alcohol consumption, which means that about a million Swedes consume large amounts, which can be injurious and dangerous.
Tina Zethraeus | alfa
Single-stranded DNA and RNA origami go live
15.12.2017 | Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard
New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists
15.12.2017 | Louisiana State University
DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.
Researchers have created chemical amplifiers and a chemical oscillator using a systematic method that has the potential to embed sophisticated circuit...
MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.
Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...
Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...
Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.
To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...
The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.
Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
07.12.2017 | Event News
15.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering
15.12.2017 | Materials Sciences
15.12.2017 | Life Sciences