Paper Lab


This small square of paper is probably the coolest thing I’ve seen in a long time. What looks like a modern cut-paper tree is really a tiny medical diagnostic tool. Invented by Harvard Faculty member George Whitesides and made of paper and water-repellent comic-book ink, these incredible little labs can detect diseases like malaria, HIV, hepatitis and tuberculosis with just a drop of blood.

While paper medical tests are not new (pregnancy tests are probably the best known example), this little chip can test for multiple diseases simultaneously and the colors can indicate the severity of the illness.

prototypepaper chip

Check out the video below of Whitesides’ talk from TED to learn more about the making these chips and their practical uses in remote areas with limited access to medical facilities and doctors.

via inhabitat

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