A world-first, pain-free diabetes test developed at the University of Newcastle, Australian researchers have developed a needle-free diabetes test that measures glucose levels from saliva — not blood.
what is diabetes? Diabetes is a disease that occurs when your blood glucose, also called blood sugar, is too high. Blood glucose is your main source of energy and comes from the food you eat. Insulin, a hormone made by the pancreas, helps glucose from food get into your cells to be used for energy. Sometimes your body doesn’t make enough—or any—insulin or doesn’t use insulin well. Glucose then stays in your blood and doesn’t reach your cells.
in over time the glucose in your blood can cause health problems. Although diabetes has no cure, you can take steps to manage your diabetes and stay healthy.
Some people treat diabetes with insulin injection when levels get high, but how do they know their levels get high, so they have to test their blood using a painful needle prick multiple times a day.
An estimated 30% of people with diabetes experience anxiety over the finger-prick process. That anxiety has been connected to testing avoidance and if people aren’t testing their blood glucose levels when they should be, they might not be properly managing their disease.
Needle-free diabetes test
Australian researchers have developed a needle-free diabetes test that measures glucose levels from saliva, It’s a thin sensor about the size of a stick of gum. When a person licks the sensor, a coating on it interacts with their saliva. That reaction creates an electrical current that can be measured to reveal their body’s glucose levels on a smartphone app.
The concentrations of glucose in saliva are much smaller than in blood, so developing a diabetes test that could accurately measure them wasn’t easy, but the sensor is reportedly accurate.
“With this highly sensitive platform, we can now detect glucose at the levels found in saliva, for the first time,”lead researcher Paul Dastoor said in a press release.
Australian researchers plan to begin construction on a dedicated manufacturing facility before the end of 2021, with the goal of producing devices by 2023