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Blood Analysis:

Photonics Spectra
Aug 1998
Optical Methods Aim at Huge Markets

Kevin Robinson, Senior News Editor

Most blood analysis occurs in clinical laboratories, either within hospitals or at private sites. However, new technologies, including some that use photonics components, are moving this type of test out of the lab and closer to the patient
Whether laboratory or point-of-care, most analysis devices are either optical or electrochemical, and many large instrument companies are moving to all-optical methods. Optical devices are useful in conventional devices, and long-term trends in the industry seem to be moving toward simpler optical chemical sensors using synthetic receptors and in vitro devices designed to measure more substances.
The hottest race in blood analysis instrumentation is completely non-invasive blood measurement systems, especially for blood glucose. Diabetics must carefully monitor their blood glucose level. A low-cost, non-invasive system that could measure blood glucose discretely, quickly and noninvasively could capture an immense diabetic market.

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