Home / Knowledge / News / Textiles / Silk fibres can help health monitoring
Silk fibres can help health monitoring
11
Jun '10
Silk could provide a sophisticated new way of monitoring health, Peter Domachuk, a physicist from the University of Sydney, has found.

He and his colleagues have created microchips using silk fibres. In the lab they've demonstrated that these microchips can measure oxygen using haemoglobin embedded in the silk.

Their aim is to embed a wide range of proteins so they can run dozens of blood test simultaneously at the point of care instead of waiting for the pathology lab.

"We hope that within the decade our silk chips will be at work in every hospital, GP clinic and home," says Peter who developed the idea of using natural fibres in medical devices while working with Fiorenzo Omenetto and David Kaplan at Tufts University, Boston USA.

Silk fibres, he says, can be formed into tiny platforms or "bio-chips" that should allow medical testing and measuring of vital signs to be undertaken more rapidly and cheaply than current technology allows. His work will be presented for the first time in public this week at Fresh Science - a national science talent search - at the Melbourne Museum. Peter is one of 16 winners from across Australia.

The protein that underpins the strength of silk, fibroin, can be purified to form a clear material that can be used to display tiny drops of thousands of different biochemical compounds in patterns where they are no farther apart than the width of a human hair. These test compounds can then be simultaneously exposed to and react with body fluids such as human blood.

"The particularly interesting thing about silk," Peter says, "is that the biochemical compounds it holds retain their activity. This biochemical activity enables extra sensitivity for monitoring and detecting medical conditions. And fibroin is transparent and can be formed into structures to control light which can be then used as a sensitive probe for improved medical testing. What's more, silk doesn't trigger the human immune response when it comes into contact with tissue."

The above combination of factors makes silk a unique candidate for implantable biochips - devices like electronic microchips that can sit in or under the skin and detect chemicals in the blood. This can allow quick and accurate determination of medical conditions without the need for expensive laboratory-based pathology.

"I'm confident that the technology can lower healthcare costs and reduce patient risk," Peter says.

Peter Domachuk is one of 16 early-career scientists presenting their research to the public for the first time thanks to Fresh Science, a national program sponsored by the Australian Government. His challenges include presenting his discoveries in verse at a Melbourne pub.

University of Sydney


Must ReadView All

Courtesy: Raymond

Apparel/Garments | On 28th Jun 2017

Raymond plans to invest Rs 1,400 crore in Amravati plant

Raymond, Indian textiles and apparel major, has decided to invest Rs...

Textiles | On 28th Jun 2017

GST and textiles industry: Analysis and opinion

The Goods and Services Tax (GST) is at long last all set to be rolled ...

Textiles | On 28th Jun 2017

India probing dumping of polyester yarn by China

Indian government is probing anti-dumping allegations against a...

Interviews View All

Shiladitya K Joshi
Truetzschler India Private Limited

India ITME provides a platform to interact with our stakeholders

Smarth Bansal
Colorjet India Limited

We would like to venture more companies into the Indian market

Amrit Sethia
SOIE

‘The intimatewear category in India is slowly becoming trend-sensitive.’

Mark Paterson
Technical Absorbents Ltd

Mark Paterson, R&D manager of Technical Absorbents Ltd talks about Super...

Kevin Nelson
TissueGen

Kevin Nelson, Chief Scientific Officer, TissueGen discusses the growing...

Steve Cole
Xerium Technologies

Steve Cole of Xerium Technologies discusses the industry. Xerium is the...

Aditi Somani
Aditi Somani

Aditi Somani specialises in luxury fusion wear with international cuts and ...

Ritu Kumar
Label Ritu Kumar

‘Classics will return’ "There are a lot of people wearing western clothes ...

Madhu Jain
Madhu Jain

She grew up in the walled city of Old Delhi, completed her studies, and...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


editorial@fibre2fashion.com

Letter To Editor






(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies





SEARCH

news category


Related Categories:
July 2017

July 2017

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.

SUBSCRIBE


Browse Our Archives

GO


E-News Insight
Subscribe Today and Get the
Latest News Update in Your Mail Box.
Advanced Search