Washington: American researchers have demonstrated a new optical technique to detect TB bacteria in fluids.
The method developed by a team of scientists at the Colorado State University (CSU) uses light to identify various molecular markers to spot tuberculosis (TB) infection.
Although the research team led by CSU professor Diego Krapf has not made a device that can detect TB bacteria in blood or urine samples, they say building such a mechanism would not be difficult with the existing technology.
Presently, doctors discover TB infections by taking chest X-rays, or analysing the sputum of an individual.
The new technique devised by CSU researchers is more effective because it can detect cases of where the bacterial infection has just started, something that cannot be found using the traditional methods.
It is also believed this method will be quite useful for the developing nations.
The team is now gearing up to test blood and urine samples of TB patienst to find out how sensitive a detector should be.
The study will be presented at the Optical Society``s (OSA) Annual Meeting, Frontiers in Optics (FiO), in San Jose, California.