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DVD discs double as cheap diagnostic kit for HIV.

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Don’t know what to do with all those DVD’s collecting dust in your closet? Well maybe now there’s a scientific use for them!

Someone Somewhere

  • HIV_Particles_R_Dourmashkin_Wellcome_Images_130507131323537
  • A prototype device uses DVDs to diagnose HIV on the cheap
  • The hope is to have it rolled out as a clinically validated device for a range of diseases within three years
  • But this will require more funding, new partnerships and further research

Researchers have turned conventional DVDs into portable and cheap diagnostic tools for developing countries, and are now adapting their prototype into a workable medical device.

A team led by Aman Russom of the KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden has demonstrated proof-of-concept for the tool by testing for HIV.

Blood samples are loaded into micro-channels on a modified, semi-transparent DVD disc and scanned by a DVD reader, which has been adapted to detect light transmitted through the disc. The image can then be visualised on a computer screen.

Previous attempts to use CDs or DVDs for biological analysis have suffered from low image resolution or issues…

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