“If we look back, the 19th century was the century of industrialization, the 20th century the beginning of the information age and I think the 21st Century is going to be the century of health care and biotechnology,” says Research Supervisor, Tom Ford. All 5 scientists believe there will be radical changes in health care from personalized medicine, pre-symptom diagnosis, nanorobots in our blood to ‘lab on a chip’ testing.
Ford believes this ‘lab on a chip’ technology could take the form of a home monitoring device into which you could give a daily sweat or blood sample. From these samples chemicals would be analysed – over time this information would build up a pattern of the person’s health. With this information relayed to your GP, any changes in your body such as cancer growth could be picked up before symptoms even arise.
Research Scientist, Richard Tuley, believes that DNA testing will be become easier and cheaper allowing for people to have their full genome sequenced. Tuley says, “Then you can do various treatments and make drug based decisions on what is most likely to work for you rather than what is most likely to work for the population at large.”
Matthieu Senes, who is a Research Supervisor, envisages nanorobots swimming around our bodies like miniature surgeons fixing damaged parts of the body. Senes says we could have, “Very small robots that go through your veins to unblock them. If we get very tiny robots that are wireless, you can inject them with a syringe and they will be able to do very precise jobs.”
Every day for the next week we will be releasing the next Sharp workshop in the series. Stay tuned tomorrow for Education…
Illustrations exclusively drawn for Humans Invent by Neil Jones.