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The Application of Biosensors in Healthcare

Leonard Fass, Director Academic Relations, GE Healthcare

Future healthcare will need to manage a large increase in chronic disease with limited resources. Patient Centric Healthcare will be help to optimize disease management in the hospital and the community. Remote Patient Monitoring and Body Sensor Networks will be key elements facilitating Patient Centric Healthcare. Wearable and implantable sensors will have applications in the remote monitoring of patients with chronic disease, in the community. Existing Wireless Sensor Networks do not match the needs of the human body that has a complicated internal environment that responds to and interacts with external stimuli and is a self contained system requiring specific sensors and real time monitoring. Body Sensor Networks need to create a personalized monitoring system that is based on autonomic sensing, context aware and invisible to the subject with no activity restriction and no behaviour modification.

Body sensors will contribute to a wide range of diagnostic applications through the development of:

  • Wearable sensors
  • Biocompatible implantable diagnostic devices
  • Internal diagnostics sensors
  • Intracellular diagnostics sensors
  • Interventional device guidance sensors

Nano biosensors will have applications in the emergency room for real time, in-situ reading of biochemical activity, cellular level optical imaging and in sensor guided precision surgical tools. In the doctors office it will be possible to obtain a total blood analysis in minutes, a rapid, accurate disease diagnosis and a patient specific disease treatment through the use of molecular recognition and high density nano-arrays. At home the use of biosensors, wireless communications, self powered devices and high-resolution displays will allow simple patient administered diagnostic tests and automatic transmission of outpatient data from home to the doctor or the hospital.

Biography: Dr Leonard Fass

Leonard Fass obtained a first class honours degree in Electrical Engineering and a PhD. in Materials Science at Imperial College where he has accepted an appointment as a visiting professor. He has spent 39 years in medical technology in R&D and marketing roles. His current role involves developing the interaction between GE Healthcare, academia and other industrial organizations. His expertise includes Molecular Medicine, Biomedical Imaging, Bioinformatics, Integrated Biomarkers, Photonics, Remote Patient Monitoring and Nanotechnology. He is a member of: several international advisory boards including the Business and Industry Advisory Committee to the OECD, the Healthcare Working Group of the US Council for International Business, the Photonics Strategy Group of the DTI, the Imaging Working Group of Cancer Research UK, NanoMedNet and the Dolomite Advisory Group for Microfluidics.