Your phone’s camera can detect bacteria

A new method based on images obtained from smartphonesallows you to identify bacteria potentially harmful to wool and oral cavity. A technique developed by researchers from Washington Universityyou can visually identify microbes V wool which contribute to the appearance of acne and slow down scarring wounds. Moreover, with regard to oral cavityidentifies bacteria which can cause gingivitis and Dental plates.

To develop a new tool, the team combined the body modification smartphone with image processing techniques for lighting bacteria in pictures taken with a camera smartphone common. This created a quick and inexpensive method that could be used at home.

“Bacteria on the skin and in the mouth can have a huge impact on our health, from causing cavities to slowing wound healing.”

bacteria V wool and in mouth they can have a huge impact on our health, from causing tooth decay to slowing wound healing. Because the smartphones are so widely used that we wanted to develop a simple and cost effective tool for people to learn about bacteria V wool And oral cavity“, explain Ruikang WangProfessor bioengineering and ophthalmology belonging Washington University.

So they focused on the potential of the cameras smartphonesWhat are they “RGB cameras“. They convert all wavelengths of light in the visual spectrum into red, green and blue. Each pixel of the image created smartphone This is a combination of these colors.

However bacteria emits many colors, in addition to the red, green and blue that a normal camera camera smartphone overlooked. For this reason the team Van increased the capabilities of the camera by placing a small printed ring on it 3D. There are 10 lights in the ring. LEDs black around camera hole in phone case smartphone.

The researchers used a smartphone with LEDs to photograph oral cavity And wool the faces of the two subjects of the study. “Lights LEDs stir up the class molecules derived from bacteria calls porphyrinswhich causes them to emit a red fluorescent signal, which the camera smartphone can be picked up,” said the lead author Tsinghua Hegraduate student bioengineering belonging Washington University.

Many of these are a by-product of metabolism and growth. bacteria produce porphyrins. They may accumulate in wool and in mouthwhere bacteria are present in high numbers, as co-author stated Yuandong Lidoctoral researcher at bioengineering belonging Washington University. “In general, the more porphyrins visible on the surface wool, For example, there is great difficulty in scarring wounds and pimples,” he claimed Lee.

Lighting LEDs provided the team with the visual information they needed to compute color conversions. RGB images obtained from smartphone to other wavelengths of the visual spectrum. This is how an image is created”pseudo-multispectral“consisting of 15 different sections of the visual spectrum instead of three, as in the image.” RGB original.

The LED lighting provided the team with the necessary visual information to be able to compute the RGB colors of smartphone images into other wavelengths of the visual spectrum.

pseudo-multispectral imaging decided group porphyrin V wool and inside oral cavity. In addition, the image analysis process can be modified to detect other signatures. bacterial which also fluoresce under LEDs.

“We can look at different components at the same time. if you have bacteria that produce a different by-product that you want to detect, you can use the same image to search for it, which is not possible with conventional imaging systems today,” he added. Van.

This study opens the door to the development of new home methods to assess oral health And leather base. In this way, users will be provided with information on whether they need to see a dentist or other specialist. This would also help identify bacteria potentially problematic in other medical contexts, such as healing wounds on other parts of the body.

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