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BOSTON ADVANCED TECHNOLOGIES SELECTED TO BUILD NONINVASIVE BLOOD SENSOR FOR NASA

 BOSTON ADVANCED TECHNOLOGIES SELECTED TO BUILD
 NONINVASIVE BLOOD SENSOR FOR NASA
 NEWTON, Mass., June 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Boston Advanced Technologies has received a NASA Phase II Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) contract to build a noninvasive sensor for blood analysis during manned space flight, the company announced today. The sensor uses laser light to probe through the skin and detect the oxygen, glucose, and cholesterol content of the blood circulating below. It provides real-time, continuous information and eliminates the need to draw blood. The contract with NASA's Johnson Space Flight Center in Houston, Texas, is valued at over $500,000 over two years.
 Boston Advanced Technologies had previously received a Phase I contract to prove the product's technical feasibility. During Phase I BAT successfully penetrated the skin without causing tissue damage to obtain information on the blood's contents. Also, in experiments conducted outside the body, the sensor measures and differentiates components at the appropriate concentrations. BAT reports that NASA requested a Phase II proposal after reviewing Phase I results and that this year only 70 of the 220 requested proposals were funded. Phase II efforts will be directed at product engineering and building a prototype for measuring blood glucose, hematocrit, albumin and cholesterol levels.
 Commercial products stemming from this research include home and physician-assisted monitoring devices for glucose in diabetics, cholesterol levels, and drug screening. They can be set to alert the user when concentrations have reached a critical level. These noninvasive sensors configured as small wearable devices will allow users a more regular lifestyle, protect medical personnel from blood- borne diseases and provide instant information in emergency situations.
 Home testing is one of the fastest-growing areas in medical diagnosis. The U.S. diabetic self-testing market alone is estimated at $400 million per year and growing at 15 percent annually. Noninvasive glucometers are expected to displace a large portion of that market.
 In addition to the blood monitoring contracts, BAT has won three other contracts over the past two years, including a Phase I from the Air Force to develop a sensor for volatile turbine fuels, and a NASA Phase I and II for a water contaminants sensor for space shuttles. BAT reports that the total value of these contracts, including the recent contracts for noninvasive blood sensors, exceeds $1 million.
 Separately, Boston Advanced Technologies announced that it has been named subcontractor on NeoMecs Inc.'s Air Force Contract to develop a system to analyze hazardous chemicals in groundwater. NeoMecs, of St. Louis Park, Minn., manufactures sampling membranes.
 Boston Advanced Technologies is a developer, marketer and producer of optical sensing systems. These devices use spectroscopy to determine the make-up of a liquid by analyzing how laser light from a known source is altered by interaction with it. Product applications include noninvasive blood monitors, petroleum leak detection equipment and fuels properties analyzers. The company is located in Newton.
 -0- 6/29/92
 /CONTRACT: Gretchen Clarke of Boston Advanced Technologies, 617-964-3660/ CO: Boston Advanced Technologies ST: Massachusetts IN: MTC SU: CON


CN -- NE013 -- 4734 06/29/92 12:48 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 29, 1992
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