We at SALSA have long been interested in a motor/sensory/skin “closed loop” system to monitor for changes in gait, inflammation and pressure (among other items) and potentially to change the way people walk and ultimately prevent injury (especially diabetic foot wounds). To that end, we’ve been very engaged in “intelligent textiles” as theranostic agents. To that end, we applaud the work going on in Taipei on this topic, as well. Note this article from the great folks at Medgadget:
Finally, after an evolutionary plateau that would raise the metaphorical eyebrow of an amphibious reptile, the future of underwear is here. Researchers in the US and Taiwan have been hard at work developing wearable amperometric biosensors that can be printed onto clothing and could one day find their way into your underpants. As a proof-of-concept, the team developed sensors for the detection of NADH and H2O2. They found that their new biosensors, which were printed on the elastic waistband of men’s underwear, were able to withstand the deformatory forces typically endured by clothing. In the future, the researchers plan to develop sensors enabling the detection of other substances such as lactate and ethanol. The technology could greatly assist in monitoring certain biochemical parameters in patients outside the hospital, and may also find application in sports and the military.