Inflammatory biomarkers present in the human body play a vital role in medical field by guiding the clinician in decision-making for many diseases. The levels of these inflammatory biomarkers are associated with the severity and progress of several diseases. Researchers have found that increasing severity of many diseases such as cardiovascular disease, after surgery infection, and adverse clinical outcomes due to infectious diseases, results in the elevation of the level of inflammatory biomarkers in human sweat. Furthermore, the inflammatory cytokines indicate the pathophysiology and prognosis of critically ill SARS‑CoV‑2 patients. In this thesis work, different sensors have been developed for the detection of inflammatory biomarkers, such as C-reactive proteins (CRP), Interlukin-6 (IL-6), and Interlukin-10 (IL-10) to enable real-time monitoring of the aforementioned disease conditions. These inflammatory biomarkers also provide valuable information on the wound healing progress. Hence, a wound monitoring sensor has also been fabricated in this thesis work for real-time monitoring and management of wound dynamics. Besides detection and monitoring the disease conditions, it is also necessary to provide controlled and on-demand drug delivery. Therefore, an electronically controlled drug delivery module was fabricated to deliver transdermal drug through the human skin. The developed sweat sensors detected the target analytes from a small amount of artificial sweat sample collected via a microfluidic channel that minimized the requirement of sweat sample, and reduced contamination and evaporation of sweat from the human skin. The microfluidicii channel collected the sweat from skin and directed the sweat flow to the main sensing region. In addition, a substantial amount of attention is needed to ensure the high-precision performance of wearable sensors irrespective of any body movements such as stretching, bending, and twisting motions. To achieve this, kirigami-patterned strain-insensitive sensors were integrated on a biaxially stretchable kirigami structure to quantitively measure sweat pH and temperature. The straininsensitive sensor depicted an excellent performance under biaxial tensile strain applied up to 220% and torsional strain up to 360°. Finally, tattoo sensors, fully conformal like a tattoo on the skin, were fabricated. In order to validate the performance of the tattoo sensor on a living cell, the temperature and humidity data were collected from live plants under both water-stress and unstressed conditions. All the sensors reported in this thesis have impressive performance with high sensitivity, accuracy, and low limit of detection (LoD), which are the expected parameters for every sensor. The sweat sensors fabricated in this thesis depicted an excellent combination of flexible structure, cost-effective fabrication, skin conformity, and high linearity of response that make our devices introduce a promising new route in the healthcare application of skin-inspired wearable sweat sensors.
Date of publication
Shawana Tabassum, Ph.D., Premananda Indic, Ph.D., Shih-Feng Chou, Ph.D.
Masters of Science in Electrical Engineering
Noushin, Tanzila, "AN INTEGRATED ELECTRONIC-SKIN PATCH FOR REAL-TIME AND CONTINUOUS MONITORING OF A PANEL OF BIOMARKERS COMBINED WITH DRUG DELIVERY" (2022). Electrical Engineering Theses. Paper 49.