An Epidermal Patch for the Simultaneous Monitoring of Haemodynamic and Metabolic Biomarkers


Heart rate (HR) and BP, two of the most important vital signs, can dynamically and directly reflect the physiological status of the body. These cardiovascular parameters can be affected by fluctuations of various biomarker concentrations originating from activities such as movement, stress or the intake of food, drinks and drugs that can lead to sudden and sometimes lethal alterations. Parallel BP–chemical sensing could thus have clinical value, especially for people with underlying health conditions—such as the elderly or individuals who are obese, or those affected by diabetes and cardiovascular diseases—as their physiological response to normal day-to-day activities might differ from healthy individuals. Here we describe a non-invasive skin-worn device for the simultaneous monitoring of blood pressure and heart rate via ultrasonic transducers and of multiple biomarkers via electrochemical sensors. We optimized the integrated device so that it provides mechanical resiliency and flexibility while conforming to curved skin surfaces, and to ensure reliable sensing of glucose in interstitial fluid and of lactate, caffeine and alcohol in sweat, without crosstalk between the individual sensors. In human volunteers, the device captured physiological effects of food intake and exercise, in particular the production of glucose after food digestion, the consumption of glucose via glycolysis, and increases in blood pressure and heart rate compensating for oxygen depletion and lactate generation. Continuous and simultaneous acoustic and electrochemical sensing via integrated wearable devices should enrich the understanding of the body’s response to daily activities, and could facilitate the early prediction of abnormal physiological changes.

Authors: Juliane R. Sempionatto, Muyang Lin, Lu Yin, Ernesto De la Paz, Kexin Pei, Thitaporn Sonsa-ard, Andre N. de Loyola Silva, Ahmed A. Khorshed, Fangyu Zhang, Nicholas Tostado, Sheng Xu, Joseph Wang
Keywords: electrochemistry, sensors, probes, blood pressure measurement
DOI Number: 10.1038/s41551-021-00685-1      Publication Year: 2021

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