Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Intel's Bioelectronic chip for Chemical Detection

Imagine if you could get a lab test in the doctor’s office and see the results before you left. The Intel Bioelectronic chip might one day make that possible. The chip was an experimental project that the world’s biggest chip maker showed off at its annual Research@Intel day. The chip resembles diagnostic chips that companies such as Affymetrix already make. But the chip doesn’t use optical technology to sort through various chemicals it comes into contact with. Rather, it uses silicon electrical sensors with something called a field effect device to detect DNA or other chemical traits more easily. Udi Virobnik, the Intel researcher behind it, said that such chips could be used as universal diagnostic machines, detecting a wide range of health risks, rather than just a single-test diagnosis, as is the case with chips already in use.

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