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Wrist-Worn Mobile Alcohol Sensor May Boost Alcohol-Use Research

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The BACtrack Skyn is an example of a  wrist-worn alcohol sensor that could help researchers studying alcohol more unobtrusively, according to scientists.

The researchers suggested that participants who used the wrist-worn device might be less likely to drop out of studies.

Credit: SKYN

Scientists at Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) and the University of North Carolina (UNC) created a wrist-worn sensor that collects data on alcohol consumption less obtrusively.

UNC's Jimikaye Courtney said the nickel-sized sensor can detect transdermal alcohol concentrations, then wirelessly send the data to a smartphone for transfer to the cloud.

The researchers said the data gathered by the BACtrac Skyn monitor concurred with data gathered by ankle-worn devices and self-reporting.

Said Penn State's David E. Conroy, "Accessing that information in real time opens up a whole host of new possibilities for monitoring and detecting risk states and outcomes. Also, if we can understand when a person has started drinking—not relying on them to tell us—but rather picking up the signal that a person is eliminating alcohol, we could possibly do some interesting things with respect to predictive modeling of risk and just-in-time intervention to mitigate that risk."

From Penn State News
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