News & Events

Young Scientist Develops Cell Phone App that Diagnoses Malaria

June 16, 2011

With a team of creative and energetic students, Wilson To, a graduate student in comparative pathology, has developed a tool that combines a special lens with a cellular telephone that will aid the diagnosis of malaria outside the doctor's office. The lens can detect malarial parasites in blood smears and communicate that data to others via a server. The invention, "Life Lens," can also provide location information to assist in pinpointing the location of a possible outbreak of the disease.The project took about six months to develop.

"It's been an extraordinary experience to see at the international and national levels the technology that students have developed. It's been a real inspiration to me," To says in a recent interview on "Health Tech Today."  

To and a team of students entered the project in the Microsoft Imagine Cup, an annual technology competition, and the group plans to travel to New York City to compete in the worldwide competition in July. To's team won first place in the 2010 Imagine Cup competition with another cell phone device that can help diagnose vascular disease in children.

Hear more from Wilson To in this interview (Mac users may need to download software to view this video):