Tuesday, April 27, 2010

World's Smallest, Lightest Telemedicine Microscope

Researchers at The California NanoSystems Institute at UCLA (CNSI) have developed a tiny telemedicine microscope for imaging blood samples or other fluids, testing water quality or other public health need in resource-limited settings.
From the press release:
Slightly wider than a US quarter and weighing just 46 grams, the lensless microscope is a self-contained imaging device. Using LUCAS (Lensless Ultra-wide-field Cell Monitoring Array) technology, it generates holographic images of microparticles or cells by employing a light-emitting diode to (LED) illuminate the objects and a digital sensor array to capture their images.
Samples are loaded using a small chip that can be filled with saliva or a blood smear for health monitoring. With blood smears, the lensless microscope is capable of accurately identifying cells and particles, including red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets. The technology has the potential to help monitor diseases like malaria, HIV and tuberculosis.
The microscope is fairly robust with few moving parts and a large aperture. Images can be uploaded via a direct USB connection to a smart phone or other device, and sent to a hospital.
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