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 Deep stimulation improves cognitive control by augmenting brain rhythms
04.04.2019 | Picower Institute at MIT

nachricht Black nanoparticles slow the growth of tumors
04.04.2019 | Technische Universität München

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: Quantum gas turns supersolid

Researchers led by Francesca Ferlaino from the University of Innsbruck and the Austrian Academy of Sciences report in Physical Review X on the observation of supersolid behavior in dipolar quantum gases of erbium and dysprosium. In the dysprosium gas these properties are unprecedentedly long-lived. This sets the stage for future investigations into the nature of this exotic phase of matter.

Supersolidity is a paradoxical state where the matter is both crystallized and superfluid. Predicted 50 years ago, such a counter-intuitive phase, featuring...

Im Focus: Explosion on Jupiter-sized star 10 times more powerful than ever seen on our sun

A stellar flare 10 times more powerful than anything seen on our sun has burst from an ultracool star almost the same size as Jupiter

  • Coolest and smallest star to produce a superflare found
  • Star is a tenth of the radius of our Sun
  • Researchers led by University of Warwick could only see...

Im Focus: Quantum simulation more stable than expected

A localization phenomenon boosts the accuracy of solving quantum many-body problems with quantum computers which are otherwise challenging for conventional computers. This brings such digital quantum simulation within reach on quantum devices available today.

Quantum computers promise to solve certain computational problems exponentially faster than any classical machine. “A particularly promising application is the...

Im Focus: Largest, fastest array of microscopic 'traffic cops' for optical communications

The technology could revolutionize how information travels through data centers and artificial intelligence networks

Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley have built a new photonic switch that can control the direction of light passing through optical fibers...

Im Focus: A long-distance relationship in femtoseconds

Physicists observe how electron-hole pairs drift apart at ultrafast speed, but still remain strongly bound.

Modern electronics relies on ultrafast charge motion on ever shorter length scales. Physicists from Regensburg and Gothenburg have now succeeded in resolving a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Revered mathematicians and computer scientists converge with 200 young researchers in Heidelberg!

17.04.2019 | Event News

First dust conference in the Central Asian part of the earth’s dust belt

15.04.2019 | Event News

Fraunhofer FHR at the IEEE Radar Conference 2019 in Boston, USA

09.04.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

New automated biological-sample analysis systems to accelerate disease detection

18.04.2019 | Life Sciences

Explosion on Jupiter-sized star 10 times more powerful than ever seen on our sun

18.04.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

New eDNA technology used to quickly assess coral reefs

18.04.2019 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>