Researchers have developed new robotic sensor technology that has the capability to diagnose women’s reproductive health problems in real time. The technology, developed by researchers at Imperial College London and the University of Hong Kong, can be used to measure hormones that affect fertility, sexual development and menstruation more quickly and cheaply than current methods.
According to the research, published in Nature Communications, doctors usually diagnose infertility and early menopause by carrying out a blood test to measure the amount of luteinizing hormone (LH) in the sample. Current blood tests cannot easily measure the rise and fall of LH levels, which is vital for normal fertility.
The researchers used a novel biosensor linked to a robotic system, which they call Robotic APTamer-enabled Electrochemical Reader (RAPTER). It monitors the hormone patterns of patients in real time. In the study, the prototype RAPTER device was used to measure LH in the blood of patients taken every 10 minutes to yield an immediate result. The researchers believe that it could pave the way for more personalized medicine by giving clinicians a clearer picture of LH levels and suggesting more effective treatments based on an individual’s needs.