Analytical chemistry

Wearable Potentiometric Chloride Sweat Sensor: The Critical Role of the Salt Bridge.

PMID 28193033


The components of sweat provide an array of potential biomarkers for health and disease. Sweat chloride is of interest as a biomarker for cystic fibrosis, electrolyte metabolism disorders, electrolyte balance, and electrolyte loss during exercise. Developing wearable sensors for biomarkers in sweat is a major technological challenge. Potentiometric sensors provide a relatively simple technology for on-body sweat chloride measurement, however, equilibration between reference and test solutions has limited the time over which accurate measurements can be made. Here, we report on a wearable potentiometric chloride sweat sensor. We performed parametric studies to show how the salt bridge geometry determines equilibration between the reference and test solutions. From these results, we show a sweat chloride sensor can be designed to provide accurate measurements over extended times. We then performed on-body tests on healthy subjects while exercising to establish the feasibility of using this technology as a wearable device.