An estimated 220 million people become infected with malaria each year. The disease is often lethal – particularly in tropical developing countries with insufficient health care services.
The infected suffer from a high fever. As this is also the case with other germs, however, it is important to conduct a rapid and precise analysis to determine the cause of the disease for a successful therapy. A team of researchers aims to develop a rapid test of this kind within the context of the project DiscoGnosis.
Launched in November 2012, the project will receive three million euros in funding from the European Union and is being coordinated by the Department of Microsystems Engineering (IMTEK) of the University of Freiburg.
DiscoGnosis stands for “disc-shaped point-of-care platform for infectious disease diagnosis” – a device that looks similar to a DVD player. Its purpose will be to purify patients’ blood samples and detect all relevant fever-causing germs in a single step. The institutions responsible for the project want to develop an inexpensive method for determining whether a person with fever has malaria or not. Studies have shown that 30 to 40 percent of patients being treated for malaria are actually suffering from typhus or dengue fever.
Each disc will be intended for one use only and will be capable of making a reliable diagnosis automatically with the help of integrated biochemical analytical processes. The innovation thus has the potential to bring modern diagnostics to countries and regions with poor infrastructure and improve the health care of entire populations. Ultimately, it could serve as a shield to stop the spread of malaria in Europe, which is currently being exacerbated by climate change.
IMTEK’s partners in the consortium are the University Medical Center Göttingen, the University Hospital Basel, Switzerland, the Swiss tool technology and engineering company Rohrer AG, the biotechnology companies MagnaMedics Diagnostics BV from the Netherlands and MAST Group Ltd. from Great Britain, and the European Foundation for Clinical Nanomedicine.
Dr. Konstantinos Mitsakakis
Department of Microsystems Engineering, Laboratory for MEMS Applications
University of Freiburg
Phone: +49 (0)761/203-73252
PR & Marketing
Department of Microsystems Engineering
University of Freiburg
Phone: +49 (0)761/203-73242
More articles from Medical Engineering:
Siemens develops new analog mammography system
02.12.2013 | Siemens AG
The molecular architecture of three key proteins and their complexes reveals how plants fine-tune their immune response to pathogens
Plants rarely get sick in their natural environment. When the threat of infection arises, a quick decision is made about the necessary countermeasures. The course is set by a protein which forms complexes with its partner proteins for this purpose.
Jane Parker from the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding ...
Researchers studying speciation of butterfly orchids on the Azores have been startled to discover that the answer to a long-debated question "Do the islands support one species or two species?" is actually "three species".
Hochstetter's Butterfly-orchid, newly recognized following application of a battery of scientific techniques and reveling in a complex taxonomic history worthy of Sherlock Holmes, is arguably Europe's rarest orchid species. Under threat in its mountain-top retreat, the orchid urgently requires conservation recognition.
A lavishly illustrated publication, titled "Systematic revision of Platanthera in ...
Researchers from Brown University and the University of Hawaii have found some mineralogical surprises in the Moon's largest impact crater.
Data from the Moon Mineralogy Mapper that flew aboard India's Chandrayaan-1 lunar orbiter shows a diverse mineralogy in the subsurface of the giant South Pole Aitken basin.
The differing mineral signatures could be reflective of the minerals dredged up at the time of the giant impact 4 billion years ago, ...
In power electronics systems bonded connections create the central electrical connections between adjoining surfaces.
The quality of these bonded connections is one of the main factors that determines the reliability and availability of drive systems in electric vehicles, and hence constitutes a major design challenge for German auto manufacturers aiming to electrify their vehicles.
Now the partners participating in the RoBE (Robust Bonds in ...
International team of scientists develops new feedback method for optimizing the laser pulse shapes used in the control of chemical reactions
In many ways, traditional chemical synthesis is similar to cooking. To alter the final product, you can change the ingredients or their ratio, change the method of mixing ingredients, or change the temperature or pressure of the environment of the ingredients.
Like an accomplished chef, chemists have become very skilled ...
11.12.2013 | Information Technology
11.12.2013 | Life Sciences
11.12.2013 | Agricultural and Forestry Science
11.12.2013 | Event News
10.12.2013 | Event News
05.12.2013 | Event News