WeCare brings together the Institute of Neuroinformatics UZH, the Sports Medicine Center of the University Hospital of Lausanne (CHUV), the international partner Instituto de Microelectrónica de Barcelona (IMB-CSIC) and the EPFL-LMTS group, for the development of new generation non-invasive integrated sweat biomonitoring platforms.
The project will provide foundational background on the essential – and so far unassessed – temporal dynamics of metabolites in sweat and their link to the physiological state of individuals. Compared to other biological fluids such as blood and saliva, sweat has been unexplored as an analytical sample for biomedical applications, but is steadily gaining interest because of the possibility to continuously obtain information in a non-obtrusive way and the rich variety of indicators present. Since one of the most demanding real-time biosensing applications is sports physiology, WeCare will focus primarily on the sustained fitness diagnosis of athletes.
Figure 1: WeCare wearable sweat sensing platform
Soft Sensing Patch
The role of LMTS is the creation of a new generation of cost-effective, soft and printed microsystems to realize a smart patch conformably fixed on the skin. The sensing patch will be based on biocompatible and disposable materials.
The sensing patch consists on:
- Sweat collector based on absorbent materials. This has a large pad contacting with the skin that will provide continuous suction of sample during the device operation;
- Soft substrate that contains microfluidics channels and chambers to collect sweat and to drive it to the sensors;
- Electrochemical sensors made by printed technologies (i.e. inkjet and screen printing) for detection of electrolytes, metabolites and various other sweat biomarkers;
- Temperature, pH and sweat-rate sensors for accurate real-time sweat analysis and data corrections.
Figure 2. Printed electrochemical sensors into a microfluidic system
Systems Integration, Testing and Data Analysis
The integration of the sensing patch with the read-out electronics is realized in collaboration with the IBM-CSIC group. The data analysis through neurocognitive machine learning algorithms is provided by the UZH group. The sweat platform testing on athletes and the clinical analysis are performed by the CHUV group.
- S. Demuru, R. Haque, M. O. Joho, A. Bionaz, P. van der Wal, D. Briand, “3D-Integration of Printed Electrochemical Sensors in PET Microfluidics for Biochemical Sensing”, IEEE, proceeding at: Transducers & Eurosensors XXXIII, 2019 June 23-27, Berlin, Germany, 2464-2467
- S. Demuru, A. Marette, W. Kooli, P. Junier, D. Briand, “Flexible Organic Electrochemical Transistor with Functionalized Inkjet-Printed Gold Gate for Bacteria Sensing”, IEEE, proceeding at: Transducers & Eurosensors XXXIII, 2019 June 23-27, Berlin, Germany, 2519-2522
SNF Sinergia WeCare 2018-2022