Aside from its application to diabetes, the device has promise for use with other tissues and organs. “We can modify the core technology to sense function in a range of microphysiological systems,” said Glieberman. “With the ability to detect cell secretions continuously, we want to make it easier to explore how cells use protein signals to communicate. This technology may eventually develop new insights into dynamic metrics of health for both diagnostics and treatment.”

This study was supported by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (awards UC4 DK104165, UC4 DK116283, RO1 DK080714), Harvard’s Materials Research Science and Engineering Centers (grant no. DMR-690 1420570) and the Harvard Center for Nanoscale Systems (National Science Foundation award 1541959), and the Life Sciences Research Foundation.