Recent News


September 12, 2018

Wearable ultrasound patch monitors blood pressure deep inside body

A new wearable ultrasound patch that non-invasively monitors blood pressure in arteries deep beneath the skin could help people detect cardiovascular problems earlier on and with greater precision. In tests, the patch performed as well as some clinical methods to measure blood pressure. Applications include real-time, continuous monitoring of blood pressure changes in patients with heart or lung disease, as well as patients who are critically ill or undergoing surgery. The patch uses ultrasound, so it could potentially be used to non-invasively track other vital signs and physiological signals from places deep inside the body. Full Story


August 13, 2018

'Building up' stretchable electronics to be as multipurpose as your smartphone

By connecting layers of stretchable circuits on top of one another, engineers have developed an approach to build soft “3D stretchable electronics” that can pack more functions while staying thin and small. As a proof of concept, the team built a multifunctional "smart bandage" that can be worn on the skin and used to wirelessly monitor an array of signals, from respiration, to body motion, to brain activity, and even remotely control a robotic arm. Full Story


June 29, 2018

UC San Diego nanoengineer named among MIT Technology Review's top innovators under 35

MIT Technology Review has named Sheng Xu, a professor of nanoengineering at the University of California San Diego, as one of this year’s top innovators under 35. Xu is being recognized for inventing a clever way to make off-the-shelf electronics stretchable. Full Story


April 19, 2018

Clinical Trial Tests Tattoo Sensor as Needleless Glucose Monitor for Diabetes Patients

A temporary tattoo for glucose monitoring developed by engineers at UC San Diego is being tested in a phase I clinical trial. The study will test the tattoo sensor’s accuracy at detecting glucose levels compared to a traditional glucometer. The clinical trial is enrolling 50 adults, ages 18 to 75, with either type 1 or 2 diabetes or diabetes due to other causes. Full Story


April 10, 2018

Tiny injectable sensor could provide unobtrusive, long-term alcohol monitoring

Engineers have developed a tiny, ultra-low power chip that could be injected just under the surface of the skin for continuous, long-term alcohol monitoring. The chip is powered wirelessly by a wearable device such as a smartwatch or patch. The goal of this work is to develop a convenient, routine monitoring device for patients in substance abuse treatment programs.  Full Story


March 23, 2018

Flexible ultrasound patch could make it easier to inspect damage in odd-shaped structures

Researchers have developed a stretchable, flexible patch that could make it easier to perform ultrasound imaging on odd-shaped structures, such as engine parts, turbines, reactor pipe elbows and railroad tracks—objects that are difficult to examine using conventional ultrasound equipment. The ultrasound patch is a versatile and more convenient tool to inspect machine and building parts for defects and damage deep below the surface. Full Story


March 21, 2018

A wearable system to monitor the stomach's activity throughout the day

A team of researchers has developed a wearable, non-invasive system to monitor electrical activity in the stomach over 24 hours—essentially an electrocardiogram but for the gastro-intestinal (GI) tract.  Applications include monitoring GI activity for patients outside of a clinical setting, which cuts down costs. Monitoring for longer periods of time also increases the likelihood of capturing abnormal events.  Researchers detail their findings in the March 22 issue of Nature’s open access journal Scientific Reports. Full Story


March 12, 2018

Engineers develop most efficient red-light-activated switch that can turn genes on and off in mammalian cells

A team of researchers has developed a light-activated switch that can turn genes on and off in mammalian cells. This is the most efficient so-called “optogenetic switch” activated by red and far-red light that has been successfully designed and tested in animal cells—and it doesn’t require the addition of light sensing molecules from outside the cells.   Full Story


January 31, 2018

Nano-ink-based sensors detect an eye blink

Through developing a graphene-nanosheet-based ink, collaborators at the University of California ? San Diego and the National Taiwan University of Science and Technology have produced flexible, wearable, ultrathin sensors. Fabricated by printing multiple layers directly onto medical tape, the printed graphene sensors can be easily affixed to skin. Due to their high strain sensitivity, deformations to the sensor caused by subject movement can allow non-invasive health monitoring. Further, through combining multiple small sensor patches to make different geometries, the sensors accurately follow hand motions and can even monitor eye-blinking and pulse. Full Story


December 13, 2017

Less than skin deep: humans can feel molecular differences between nearly identical surfaces

How sensitive is the human sense of touch? Sensitive enough to feel the difference between surfaces that differ by just a single layer of molecules, a team of researchers at the University of California San Diego has shown. Full Story