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Transparent sensor offers more contact lens ‘real estate’

The researchers have been working on a sensor that uses a nanostructured transistor – specifically an amorphous indium gallium oxide field effect transistor or IGZO FET – which can detect subtle glucose changes in physiological buffer solutions, such as the tear fluid in eyes.The researchers claim the sensors they have fabricated using the IGZO FET will be able to transmit real-time glucose information to a wearable pump that delivers the hormones needed to regulate blood sugar.{{quote-A:R-W:500-I:2-Q: We can monitor many compounds in tears – and since the sensor is transparent, it doesn’t obstruct vision, -WHO:Mr Greg Herman, OSU professor of chical engineering}}This could eventually be used to help type 1 diabetes patients monitor their blood glucose levels and control their insulin infusions via a transparent sensor on a contact lens.“We have fully transparent sensors that are working,” OSU professor of chical engineering Mr Greg Herman said.“What we want to do next is fully develop the communication aspect, and we want to use the entire contact lens as real estate for sensing and communications electronics, he said. We can integrate an array of sensors into the lens and also test for other things: stress hormones, uric acid, pressure sensing for glaucoma, and things like that. We can monitor many compounds in tears – and since the sensor is transparent, it doesn’t obstruct vision; more real estate is available for sensing on the contact lens,” Herman added.It was said that the transparent sensor might also one day be used for pulse measurent, monitoring oxygen levels, and even cancer detection.