Indian Engineer’s Device Determines Extent of Eye Injury


NEW YORK — An Indian American engineer and an ophthalmologist in the U.S. are developing a portable sensor that can quickly and inexpensively determine whether an eye injury is mild or severe.

The device, called OcuCheck, measures levels of Vitamin C in the fluids that coat or leak from the eye, according to a University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign statement.

“The sensor takes advantage of the fact that the ocular tear film — the viscous fluid that coats the eyeball — contains low levels of ascorbic acid, which is just Vitamin C, while the interior of the eye contains much higher levels,” said the university’s bioengineering professor Dipanjan Pan.

Pan is creating the device in collaboration with Carle ophthalmologist Leanne Labriola.

“So the concept is, if there is severe damage to the eye that penetrates deeply, the ascorbic acid will leak out in high concentration.”

Two post-doctoral researchers in Pan’s laboratory, Manas Gartia and Santosh Misra, helped develop the new sensor.

At present, those with eye injuries must find their way to a hospital to have their injuries assessed. The process is often complicated, time-consuming and imprecise, Pan said.

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