Biosensor to detect heart failure in the works

Make a biosensor that will detect heart failure in good time. This is the assignment set by the international competition SensUs, which is being run by the Honors Academy. For the organizers, a group of Bachelor's students majoring in Software Science have designed an online platform that will go live during the two-day event in September, enabling the worldwide audience to follow the activities of the participating teams in the Auditorium.

When the human heart is overstrained, the level of a certain protein (NT-proBNP) in the blood rises. If this biomarker can be reveals with a biosensor, the patient can get help in good time. Willem Brekelmans, a member of the SensUs organization at the Honors Academy, knows there is strong demand for just such a biosensor,  and that its use can make a significant difference to heart patients. “This is why we have made heart failure the subject of this year's competition.”

Ten student teams from Egypt, Belgium, Scotland, the United States and elsewhere are participating. The Netherland's representative is the TU/e team T.E.S.T. In the TU/e Contest they won the audience award of one thousand euros. On September 8 and 9 teams from across the globe will come to Eindhoven to convince the audience of the value of their working prototypes.

SensUs Digital

The audience won't necessarily need to come to the Auditorium in September. For their Bachelor's final project, the Valedictorian group, comprising nine Software Science students, produced an online platform by the name of SensUs Digital. This offers the chance to watch a live stream of the event. In addition, it means updated data will be constantly available, the audience will be able to post comments on social media, and questions can be answered live. Here too votes can be placed for the audience award.

Bachelor's student Herman Galioulline says SensUs Digital is a success. “This cooperation between a Software Engineering project and an Honors track is unique. We paid close attention to SensUs's request and have made a good product.” Brekelmans is proud of the result and adds that the project offered learning opportunities for both parties. “You find out that is essential to formulate thoughts and ideas well, and that it is easy for things to be overlooked because you had assumed they were self-evident.”

In the meantime, the platform is not yet ready for September's competition. In the coming months SensUs Digital will need to be tested and some adjustments made. Once the competition starts, everything must work flawlessly in the online environment. SensUs still has need of students who understand web design and technology and are interested in implementing the platform.

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