Opto-electronics aids medical diagnostics

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Cambridge Consultants has developed a novel detection module based on low cost opto-electronics that could enable the development of the next generation of analysers for use in either a clinical laboratory setting or at the point of care. 

This potential application uses Cambridge Consultants' multiple wavelength droplet sizing technology launched earlier this year. 


This patented technology is based on a compact unit that allows for the detection of multiple assays simultaneously. It derives from Cambridge Consultants' multi-disciplinary knowledge in optical systems, electronic signal processing and advanced mathematical modelling of physical phenomena like particle scattering. It has the potential to transform point of care testing, to offer the breadth of testing seen in a clinical analyser, or increase the performance and throughput of a clinical analyser, or reduce footprint. 

Dr Robert Jones, senior consultant at Cambridge Consultants, said: ‘We now have a single, easily manufactured module that will measure turbidity and fluorescence at multiple wavelengths, thereby paving the way for a wide range of possibilities in the next generation of point of care testing and analysis.'

The detection module incorporates a combination of spatially separated optical channels and time multiplexed operation that enables high-speed detection of multiple labels at a single station. It integrates in a single form the same functionality that normally occupies several modules in traditional laboratory analysis equipment, significantly enhancing both compactness and flexibility. The analyser can cover the entire spectrum from ultraviolet to infrared, and allows the simultaneous quantitative measurement of absorption, fluorescence and phosphorescence.