Why the Air Force Wants to See Pilots’ Sweat

Story excerpt provided by Bloomberg.

Written by Justin Bachman.

However icky one may consider eccrinology, the study of sweat and other gland secretions, this liquid is a fine carrier of the same biomarkers that the medical community usually gathers from our blood, urine, and saliva. It’s also the least invasive—no needle, cup, or swab needed.

The military is looking into its uses to monitor pilots. But commercially, sweat holds enormous promise for some biotech startups that see in sweat glands the same kind of foundational technology that could spark new health-monitoring applications, much as silicon chips helped pioneer a profusion of electronic gadgetry.

The possibilities of sweat are clear: Strap a sophisticated sweat-detector patch on your arm and watch detailed data on your biochemistry gush forth on a tablet or smartphone, alerting you to a medical peril before illness or injury strike. Dehydration, stress, muscle cramping, and depression, for example, are just four of numerous maladies that reveal their presence with chemical markers in blood—and sweat.

“It opens a whole new world,” Robert Beech, chief executive officer of Eccrine Systems Inc., said of reliable biochemical data derived from sweat.

Click here to read the complete article.

Originally published September 16, 2016.

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