Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), one of the most prestigious universities in the USA, and Harvard have designed a mask that can detect coronavirus particles in the breath of the carrier.
Reference To Sherlock Holmes
The new mask technology is based on a proposal made by MIT engineering professor James Collins in the mid-2010s for the diagnosis of Ebola and Zika viruses, according to MIT News. The sensor system that detects nucleic acids, developed by Collins, was named SHERLOCK.
For User Privacy The Result Only Appears Inside The Mask
When the coronavirus pandemic broke out last year, scientists who were already working on wearable sensors focused their attention on Covid-19. The virus-detecting mask’s prototype was introduced on Monday in the journal Nature Biotechnology.
Accordingly, it is aimed to detect viral particles in the user’s breath by placing tiny freeze-dried SHERLOCK sensors inside a paper mask. To activate the test, the user has to press a button that releases water from the small reservoir in the mask. Ready in 90 minutes, the result is visible only inside the mask for user privacy.
Developing A New Generation Of Wearable Biosensors
Working to incorporate the new test method into the lab coats of healthcare workers, the team experimented with fabrics of various types, from cotton to polyester.
Luis Soenksen, a venture founder of the MIT Abdul Latif Jameel Machine Learning Clinic in Health, who is part of the team, said they have determined the suitability of two types of fabrics that are very commonly used in the fashion industry to make clothing. Soenksen stated that a combination of polyester and other synthetic fibers are best suited.