i-sense: EPSRC IRC in Agile Early Warning Sensing Systems for Infectious Diseases and Antimicrobial Resistance
i-sense started in October 2013 as a five-year, £11M Interdisciplinary Research Collaboration (IRC), funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). In 2018, i-sense received Next Steps funding from the EPSRC for a further four years of research.
Our mission - digital health systems to test, track treat infections
i-sense aims to build a new generation of digital sensing systems to identify and prevent outbreaks of infectious disease and antimicrobial resistance, much earlier than ever before. Early detection and accurate diagnosis is key to helping patients gain faster access to care and protecting populations from disease.
Our mission strongly aligns to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and the Global Challenge Research Fund. We work in partnership with end users in low and middle-income countries, to build innovative digital technologies that meet their needs.
A global concern
Outbreaks of infectious disease can spread rapidly and unpredictably, causing enormous losses to health and livelihood. Without adequate diagnostic tools, there is the threat of on-going transmission of serious infections and delay in the identification of emerging outbreaks.
Our research and technologies
Our mobile phone-connected diagnostic tools aim to widen access to testing in GP surgeries, in the community throughout developing countries, and in the home. The aim is to build tools that are simple to use, cheap to manufacture, and provide rapid and accurate results.
The capability to detect infections and then wirelessly connect test results to healthcare systems will help patients gain faster access to treatment, and support public health efforts to map indicators of emerging infections in real-time.
We are also using the vast amount of web-based information on Google and Twitter to identify indicators of disease outbreaks before people attend clinics, or from geographical regions that are not covered by traditional public health systems.