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FP6

BIOMAGSENS — Result In Brief

Project ID: 17210
Funded under: FP6-NMP
Country: France

Super sensors to help healthcare imaging

Advanced magnetic sensors can be used in fields such as healthcare, particularly for heart and brain imaging. The latest generation of sensors will yield the most advanced biochips for accurate medical imaging.
Super sensors to help healthcare imaging
The EU-funded project 'Ultra sensitive magnetic sensors for medical applications' (Biomagsens) developed cutting-edge magnetic sensors that are highly sensitive. The consortium is composed of three research and development institutes, two small and medium enterprises and a large scale industry.

In the first phase the project developed hybrid sensors to detect minute magnetic fields in the femtotesla range, to be used in creating the next generation magnetic-based biochips. Biomagsens also explored novel approaches for biochips based on fluctuating particles that are localised in space by dipolar reconstruction.

The major challenge in manufacturing these sensors was to reduce any magnetic interference or 'noise' while maximising efficiency. Another was to create hybrid sensors with sensitivity similar to technology known as low-Tc superconducting quantum interference devices (SQUIDs), considered the most sensitive magnetic sensors to date. The project overcame both these challenges, developing the technology for low-cost, highly sensitive magnetic imaging medical systems.

The new sensors were successfully tested and integrated into the biochip platform, allowing multiplexing of the sensors and improving detection of signals. The results have led to highly reliable and sensitive magnetic sensors that are ideal for different healthcare applications, from a magneto-cardiographic (MCG) imager to a new generation of magnetic-based biochips.

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