Ingestible Device Could Monitor Gastrointestinal Health

Heme-sensitive probiotic biosensors demonstrate accurate diagnosis of GI bleeding in swine model
Heme-sensitive probiotic biosensors demonstrate accurate diagnosis of GI bleeding in swine model

HealthDay News — An ingestible micro-bio-electronic device (IMBED) could be used for in situ biomolecular detection based on environmentally resilient biosensor bacteria and luminescence readout electronics, according to a study published in the May 25 issue of Science.

Noting that biomolecular monitoring in the gastrointestinal tract could offer rapid, precise disease detection and management, Mark Mimee, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, and colleagues presented an IMBED for biomolecular detection in situ. The device was based on environmentally resilient biosensor bacteria and miniaturized luminescence readout electronics that communicate with an external device wirelessly. 

Related Articles

The researchers engineered heme-sensitive probiotic biosensors as proof of concept. In swine, these demonstrated accurate diagnosis of gastrointestinal bleeding. To demonstrate modulatory and extensibility of the detection platform, alternative biosensors were integrated.

"IMBEDs enable new opportunities for gastrointestinal biomarker discovery and could transform the management and diagnosis of gastrointestinal disease," the authors write.

Two authors have filed a patent application based on the microbial heme sensor and/or the integrated device.

Abstract/Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)