Scientists from American Chemical Society have developed a simple, thermometer-like device that can help doctors diagnose heart attacks with minimal materials and cost.
Heart attack diagnosis involves measuring the level of troponin, a protein in the patient's blood. The concentration of troponin rises when blood is cut off from the heart, and the muscle is damaged, but assessing the levels is expensive.
Sangmin Jeon and his colleagues invented a thermometer-like device, which is a sensitive and an accessible test that will detect troponin in a simpler and a cost-effective way.
Jeon explained that the process involves a glass vial, specialized nanoparticles, a drop of ink and a skinny tube. When the human serum with troponin is mixed with the nanoparticles and put in the vial, the ink climbs up a protruding tube just like a thermometer.
The researchers concluded that with the help of their new device the number of deaths related to cardiovascular disease will decrease as three-quarters of this disease occur in low-and-middle-income countries that can't afford costly machines for diagnosis.