Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Safe decay detector developed by dentists and textile experts

20.03.2002


Tooth decay could soon be detected without resorting to potentially harmful X-rays - by using a novel electrical technique developed by dental researchers at the University of Dundee in an unusual partnership with textile experts at Heriot Watt University.



Laboratory tests show the device, which measures the electrical resistance of teeth, is twice as accurate as current examination techniques and detects decay in its earliest stages when preventive treatment is still possible.

Known as ACIST - which stands for AC impedance spectroscopy technique -the device has been developed by the Dundee team together with colleagues in St Andrews University. The sensor, which was patented in 1996, is being developed in collaboration with textile specialists at Heriot Watt University.


The Dundee and Heriot Watt teams learned yesterday they have been awarded £139,500 funding by Scottish Enterprise through the Proof of Concept Fund, to develop a prototype probe for testing. If successful it could be in the market place in two years.

The concept exploits the change in the nature of the tooth as it decays. As caries progresses microscopic pores develop in the tooth which fill with fluid that conducts current. By applying an electrically conductive strip to the tooth and passing a small electrical current through it,
dentists can use the amount of resistance to the charge as a gauge of whether there is any decay.

Principal investigator Dr Chris Longbottom: "The technique is expected to be faster, safer and more accurate than X-rays which is good news for patients, dentists and the health service where it has cost-saving implications. By picking up the disease at an early stage it will also be
possible in many cases to stop or even to reverse the decay thus saving more teeth."

The plastic sensor used to measure the electrical resistance is being developed by Heriot Watt`s school of textiles in Galashiels who are working on a special polymer that could be inserted between the teeth like a wider type of dental floss.

The information from the sensor is fed to the electrical device and could be used by dentists instead of a traditional X-ray.

Once complete the probe will be clinically tested and assessed by dental researchers and, if successful, it could be taken to the commercial stage.

Dr Longbottom welcomed the funding award: "This funding will allow us to take an original concept which works in the laboratory and test its true potential in prototype as a first step towards possible commercialisation.

Caroline Petrie | alphagalileo
Further information:
http://dundee.ac.uk/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht How cancer metastasis happens: Researchers reveal a key mechanism
19.01.2018 | Weill Cornell Medicine

nachricht Researchers identify new way to unmask melanoma cells to the immune system
17.01.2018 | Duke University Medical Center

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Artificial agent designs quantum experiments

On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.

We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...

Im Focus: Scientists decipher key principle behind reaction of metalloenzymes

So-called pre-distorted states accelerate photochemical reactions too

What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...

Im Focus: The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.

Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...

Im Focus: Paradigm shift in Paris: Encouraging an holistic view of laser machining

At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.

No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...

Im Focus: Room-temperature multiferroic thin films and their properties

Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.

Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

10th International Symposium: “Advanced Battery Power – Kraftwerk Batterie” Münster, 10-11 April 2018

08.01.2018 | Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Let the good tubes roll

19.01.2018 | Materials Sciences

How cancer metastasis happens: Researchers reveal a key mechanism

19.01.2018 | Health and Medicine

Meteoritic stardust unlocks timing of supernova dust formation

19.01.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>