Featured Publications

 

Mar 31, 2021

Soft, skin-interfaced sweat stickers for cystic fibrosis diagnosis and management

Science Translational Medicine

This month's cover feature of Science Translational Medicine highlights research done in partnership with Epicore and Northwestern University teams to improve diagnosis and management for cystic fibrosis.

Here, we introduce a soft, epidermal microfluidic device (“sweat sticker”) designed for the simple and rapid collection and analysis of sweat. Intimate, conformal coupling with the skin supports nearly perfect efficiency in sweat collection without leakage. Real-time image analysis of chloride reagents allows for quantitative assessment of chloride concentrations using a smartphone camera, without requiring extraction of sweat or external analysis. Clinical validation studies involving patients with CF and healthy subjects, across a spectrum of age groups, support clinical equivalence compared to existing device platforms in terms of accuracy and demonstrate meaningful reductions in rates of leakage. The wearable microfluidic technologies and smartphone-based analytics reported here establish the foundation for diagnosis of CF outside of clinical settings.

Read the article here or read more details in Northwestern University's engineering news


Dec 11, 2020

Skin-interfaced microfluidic system with personalized sweating rate and sweat chloride analytics for sports science applications

Science Advances

Here, we introduce a skin-interfaced wearable microfluidic device and smartphone image processing platform that enable analysis of regional sweating rate and sweat chloride concentration ([Cl−]). Systematic studies (n = 312 athletes) establish significant correlations for regional sweating rate and sweat [Cl−] in a controlled environment and during competitive sports under varying environmental conditions.

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Nov 10, 2020

Soft, skin-interfaced microfluidic systems with integrated immunoassays, fluorometric sensors, and impedance measurement capabilities

PNAS

Skin-interfaced, wireless devices for clinical-grade monitoring of physiological parameters are of growing interest for uses that range from healthcare to sports performance. This paper, by researchers at Epicore Biosystems and Northwestern University, introduces a multifunctional skin-mounted microfluidic platform for capture and biomarker analysis of microliter volumes of sweat, a biofluid that can be collected noninvasively, with potential relevance in biophysical sensing.

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Jul 13, 2020

Sweat-activated biocompatible batteries for epidermal electronic and microfluidic systems

Nature Electronics

Epicore Biosystems and Northwestern University report a biocompatible, sweat-activated battery technology that can be embedded within a soft, microfluidic platform. The battery can be used in a detachable electronic module that contains wireless communication and power management systems, and is capable of continuous on-skin recording of physiological signals. To illustrate the practical utility of our approach, we show, using human trials, that the sweat-activated batteries can operate hybrid microfluidic/ microelectronic systems that simultaneously monitor heart rate, sweat chloride and sweat pH.

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Jun 16, 2020

Rapid Capture and Extraction of Sweat for Regional Rate and Cytokine Composition Analysis Using a Wearable Soft Microfluidic System

Journal of Investigative Dermatology

This Letter to the Editor highlights a study employing Epicore Biosystems's Discovery patch, a soft, skin-interfaced microfluidic patch in development, to enable rapid capture and extraction of sweat volumes for the analysis of cytokines.

This initial study highlighted in JID was completed in June 2019 in collaboration with Northwestern University dermatologists to establish baseline data using the Discovery platform and to test its clinical utility. Patches were skin mounted on 10 healthy individuals to collect sweat when individuals were exposed to heat in a controlled environment. Concentrations of three cytokines – IL-1α, IL-1RA, and IL-8 – were assessed twice a day and on consecutive days. The team demonstrated the ability to quantify the concentrations of target inflammation biomarkers in sweat across different skin locations.

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Feb 12, 2020

Can Sweat Shed a Light on Disease Severity in Atopic Dermatitis?

Dermatology Times

Wearable sensors might soon provide dermatologists and patients with unprecedented real-time information about skin health.

One such device in development, Epicore Biosystems’ wearable Discovery patch (Leo Pharma and Epicore Biosystems), aims to assess inflammatory biomarkers found in sweat and interstitial fluid in individuals with atopic dermatitis. The wearable technology will analyze cytokines in sweat to offer real-time objective assessment of the state of disease in adults with the chronic skin condition.

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2020

Human motion component and envelope characterization via wireless wearable sensors

BMC Biomedical Engineering

Here we examine the feasibility of utilizing an advanced wearable sensor, fabricated with stretchable electronics, to characterize linear and angular movements of the human arm for clinical feedback.

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2020

Role of data measurement characteristics in the accurate detection of Parkinson’s disease symptoms using wearable sensors

Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a progressive neurological disease, with characteristic motor symptoms such as tremor and bradykinesia. There is a growing interest to continuously monitor these and other symptoms through body-worn sensor technology. However, limited battery life and memory capacity hinder the potential for continuous, long-term monitoring with these devices. Here we build on a previous study to investigate the relationship between data measurement characteristics and accuracy when using wearable sensor data to classify tremor and bradykinesia in patients with PD.

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Apr 1, 2020

Don’t Sweat It: The Quest for Wearable Stress Sensors

Matter

A nervous sweat may seem like an inconvenience, but your body could be releasing important signals. Herein, Gao and colleagues develop a wearable sensor with integrated microfluidics, immunoassays, and electronics for tracking cortisol in sweat—as a biomarker of stress.

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Additional publications

Soft, skin-interfaced sweat stickers for cystic fibrosis diagnosis and management Science Translational Medicine (2021)

Rapid Capture and Extraction of Sweat for Regional Rate and Cytokine Composition Analysis Using a Wearable Soft Microfluidic System Journal of Investigative Dermatology (2021)

Sweat-activated biocompatible batteries for epidermal electronic and microfluidic systems Nature Electronics (2020)

Skin-interfaced microfluidic system with personalized sweating rate and sweat chloride analytics for sports science applications Science Advances (2020)

Can mHealth Technology Help Mitigate the Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic? IEEE Open Journal of Engineering in Medicine and Biology (2020)

Don’t Sweat It: The Quest for Wearable Stress Sensors Matter (2020)

Soft, skin-interfaced microfluidic systems with integrated immunoassays, fluorometric sensors, and impedance measurement capabilities PNAS (2020)

Soft, skin-interfaced microfluidic systems with integrated enzymatic assays for measuring the concentration of ammonia and ethanol in sweat Lab on a Chip (2020)

Waterproof, electronics-enabled, epidermal microfluidic devices for sweat collection, biomarker analysis, and thermography in aquatic settings Science Advances (2019)

Wearable Sensors for Biochemical Sweat Analysis Annual Review of Analytical Chemistry (2019)

Soft, Skin-Interfaced Microfluidic Systems with Passive Galvanic Stopwatches for Precise Chronometric Sampling of Sweat Advanced Materials (2019)

Passive sweat collection and colorimetric analysis of biomarkers relevant to kidney disorders using a soft microfluidic system Lab on a Chip (2019)

Counting Bites With Bits: Expert Workshop Addressing Calorie and Macronutrient Intake Monitoring Journal of Medical Internet Research (2019)

Soft, skin-interfaced wearable systems for sports science and analytics Current Opinion in Biomedical Engineering (2019)

Augmenting Clinical Outcome Measures of Gait and Balance with a Single Inertial Sensor in Age-Ranged Healthy Adults Sensors (Basel) (2019)

Bio-Integrated Wearable Systems: A Comprehensive Review American Chemical Society (2019)

A fluorometric skin-interfaced microfluidic device and smartphone imaging module for in situ quantitative analysis of sweat chemistry Lab on a Chip (2018)

Skin-interfaced systems for sweat collection and analytics Science Advances (2018)

Soft, Skin-Interfaced Microfluidic Systems with Wireless, Battery-Free Electronics for Digital, Real-Time Tracking of Sweat Loss and Electrolyte Composition Small (2018)

Relation between blood pressure and pulse wave velocity for human arteries PNAS (2018)

Super-Absorbent Polymer Valves and Colorimetric Chemistries for Time-Sequenced Discrete Sampling and Chloride Analysis of Sweat via Skin-Mounted Soft Microfluidics Small (2018)

Soft, skin-mounted microfluidic systems for measuring secretory fluidic pressures generated at the surface of the skin by eccrine sweat glands. Lab on a Chip (2017)

A soft, wearable microfluidic device for the capture, storage, and colorimetric sensing of sweat Science Translational Medicine (2016)