In order to maintain a healthy lifestyle, diabetes patients must measure their blood glucose levels several times daily. Unfortunately, presently available technology for the measurement of blood glucose levels is typically invasive, and sometimes painful, often resulting in poor patient compliance. A new blood glucose measurement technology is currently being developed at the Western New England University by Ronny Priefer, Ph.D., that’s employing novel breathalyzer nanotechnology.
The new tech was designed around the principle that a body deprived of glucose will resort to metabolizing stored fat, resulting in an excess of ketones (the breakdown product) in the blood and urine. One such ketone is acetone, which can be distinctly perceived on the breath of a diabetes patient not managing his/her blood glucose levels. Hence, Priefer designed a multilayered nanometer-thick film, for use in breathalyzer technology, which was designed to chemically react with the acetone in such a way as to provide a distinct quantification of its presence. The amount of present acetone is a direct indicator for the amount of glucose in the blood.
Currently, Priefer has two clinics lined up at Western New England University for trials comparing this technology to finger pricking and glucose levels measured from drawn blood. Hopefully, the results of the clinical trials will be successful, so that the lives of diabetes patients can be made just that much less stressful.