Swallowable battery could enable future ingestible medical devices

Batteries made with melanin pigments, naturally found in the skin, hair and eyes, could form non-toxic, edible batteries could one day power ingestible devices for diagnosing and treating disease. Edible electronic devices to diagnose or treat disease need a power source without toxicity issues. 

Around two decades ago, scientists developed a battery-operated ingestible camera to augment endoscopy by accessing parts of the digestive system inaccessible by traditional endoscopy. But it is designed to pass through the body and be excreted - though there remains the risk that the device will get stuck with the potential exposure to toxic components. The researchers will present their work today at the 252nd National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society.

To minimize the potential harm of future ingestible devices, a team at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) turned to melanins and other naturally occurring compounds. The researchers experimented with battery designs. Although the capacity of a melanin battery is low relative to lithium-ion, they would be high enough to power an ingestible drug-delivery or sensing devices. In parallel with the melanin batteries, the team is also making edible batteries with other biomaterials such as pectin.

Test running, chaussures, montres cardio gps et habits sports