Valencian scientists are developing an application that detects gluten in food using a mobile phone. Image: 3268zauber, CC BY-SA 3.0
A team of scientists from a University of Valencia in Spain have found a way to let people with food intolerances know if a product contains gluten using just their mobile phone.
A team of researchers from the Universitat Politècnica de València (UPV), belonging to the Interuniversity Institute for Molecular Recognition and Technological Development (IDM), have developed a new test that can easily, quickly and inexpensively detect gluten in food using a mobile phone.
The work of Luis A. Tortajada-Genaro, María Isabel Lucío and Ángel Maquieira was published in the specialist journal food control and is currently in the prototype phase. The study was accepted for publication on March 2.
About one percent of the world’s population suffers from celiac disease, a complex autoimmune disease caused by the consumption of gluten, for which there is no treatment other than eliminating it from the diet.
Therefore, detecting gluten before the product reaches the consumer is essential to ensure food safety and avoid possible health problems in people with celiac disease.
“Our prototype is designed to help control food from the moment it’s produced so that when it hits the table, it’s one hundred percent safe for the consumer,” said Tortajada-Genaro, a researcher at the IDM Institute of India. ‘UPV.
“Currently, this type of analysis requires specialized personnel; the sample must be brought to the laboratory and the results are not available in less than five hours. In contrast, with our system, we could know whether or not a food contains gluten within two hours,” he added.
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