Food safety is of paramount importance in a world where the demand for food is increasing rapidly due to a growing population. Food deemed unsafe for consumption poses a hazard to human health, as a result, food production companies responsible for hazardous outbreaks can suffer devastating consequences. There is a need for technology that can effectively monitor food safety and the environment in which food is grown to ensure that it is safe for consumption.
Food deemed to be unsafe can contribute to a variety of diseases, from gastrointestinal issues to cancer. Food safety is a global public health concern, heavily impacting both developed and developing countries, it is vital to minimise contamination and associated outbreaks of disease. Therefore, the monitoring of food safety and the environment in which it is produced is crucial in maintaining a safe food production and supply process (1, 2).
Wellbeing diagnostic devices are tools that can assist in monitoring conditions such as health statistics, including heart rate and blood pressure. In recent years these have proven to be beneficial in diagnosing and managing health conditions in a remote environment. Wellbeing diagnostic devices have evolved rapidly in recent years due to how devices such as the smartphone have rapidly changed to adapt to a more modern lifestyle. The technology underlying these mechanisms in smartphones, mainly the embedded sensors, have advanced in terms of being able to be miniaturised, their energy requirements and sensitivity and the costs becoming more reasonable as their day-to-day use has increased (1).
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a condition that affects the heart and blood vessels. It is one of the leading causes of death worldwide, responsible for over 17 million deaths: accounting for 32% of global deaths in 2019 (1). The “prevalence, high mortality and rehospitalisation rates” of CVD are all causes for further research into methods for early detection and diagnosis. Newer technologies will provide the patient with an improved prognosis and treatment plan whilst reducing the financial burden of the disease (2,3).
Autoimmune disease (AD) affects between 5-10% of the population, worldwide (1). A significant increase in antinuclear antibody prevalence from 11% to 16% has been observed in the last 25 years, however, it is unclear whether the rise is due to changes in diagnosis and reporting (2). The incidence of AD is estimated to increase by 3-9% per year.
Commonalities in generic symptoms between various AD and a lack of specific biomarkers for individual AD has made it difficult and complex to make definitive diagnoses; that in turn impacts patients life expectancy and quality (1). Early diagnosis is critical in determining the type of AD, the appropriate course of treatment and for the best prognosis and quality of life possible for the patient.
Autoimmune disease (AD) is a condition in which the immune system mistakenly attacks healthy body cells. There are more than 80 different types, many of which share similar symptoms including fever, fatigue, headaches, joint stiffness, swelling, weight loss and numbness (figure 1). These symptoms are relatively common across a broad range of illnesses and can come and go (1,2).
One in two people develop cancer in their lifetime (1). Early diagnosis broadens treatment options available that can improve patient prognosis. This drives the increasing demand for Point of care test (POCT) devices; current diagnostic methods, whilst effective, are costly and have limitations that affect the quality of patient care.
Cancer, one of the most prevalent diseases in the world today; with 14 million new cases identified each year. Until 2017, it was responsible for over 8.8 million deaths worldwide.