With pandemic gripping the world for most of the year, scientists have been searching for ways to contain the current one and slow down the spread of the next. A team of researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, have found a way to use a smartphone camera to test for viral infections.
The paper was published in the journal Science Advances , where the group describes how the use of an external catalytic microchip device and a smartphone using a trained deep learning algorithm can detect such infections.
Samples of body fluid are placed on the catalytic microchip device and then saturated with a tiny amount of hydrogen peroxide. It results in the formation of bubbles. The patterns of the bubbles are based on the virus present in the samples. The smartphone camera identifies the pattern, and with the deep learning algorithm, it recognizes the presence of the virus.
The complete process takes about 50 minutes. Currently, the researchers trained the system to recognize three viruses – Zika, hepatitis B, and C. The results are 99 percent accurate, which assures us, if the need arises, our smartphone can be our potential savior in the upcoming days.