Cell Phone Hack Analyzes Blood

A modified cell phone could allow doctors to analyze blood samples for HIV, malaria, and other diseases in remote villages where costly lab equipment and the power to run them are unavailable! The device is called a LUCAS imager (Lensfree Ultrawide-field Cell-monitoring Array platform based on Shadow imaging).
UCLA researcher Dr. Aydogan Ozcan images thousands of blood cells instantly by placing them on an off-the-shelf camera sensor and lighting them with a filtered-light source (coherent light, for you science buffs). The filtered light exposes distinctive qualities of the cells, which are then interpreted by Ozcan's custom software. By analyzing the cell types present in a much larger sample, a more accurate diagnosis can be made in a matter of minutes. No more sending blood away to a lab and waiting days or weeks for the results.

Ozcan is seeking a manufacture so these devices can be mass-produced. Link -Thanks, Dave Bullock!

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The device may be able to image CD4 vs. CD8 lymphs to get a ratio that will monitor therapy for HIV+ patients but it wouldn't diagnose the disease. That requires more sophisticated tech. A lot of hand-held devices are great for giving ballpark lab values but these devices are only calibrated once at the factory and rarely QC'd plus their linearities are limited. The $200k instrument at the lab is still a surer bet than the $200 handheld model.
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