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Brief Published: 23 Feb 2018

Ingestible Gut Health Sensors

RMIT University

Researchers at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia have developed pill-sized, ingestible sensors that can detect gas activity in the stomach, sending real-time data to an app.

According to co-inventor professor Kourosh Kalantar-zadeh, the capsules provide a much more efficient and effective way to monitor gut activity than collecting faecal samples or performing invasive surgery. This could revolutionise the way gut disorders and diseases are diagnosed and treated.

During trials, the sensors detected what the inventors describe as "a new immune system". Kalantar-zadeh said: "We found that the stomach releases oxidising chemicals to break down and beat foreign compounds that are staying in the stomach for longer than usual. This could represent a gastric protection system against foreign bodies. Such an immune mechanism has never been reported before."

Gut health is high on the agenda for consumers, and this research and innovation represents a further push in the scientific realm for understanding in this area. For another example, see New Architecture of Taste, part of our latest Industry Trend The Future of Flavour.

For more on how consumers can monitor their own microbiomes, see New Food Covetables and Culinary Consciousness.