Press Release

IIT Guwahati Researchers develop 3D printed cost-effective device for rapid diagnosis of Urinary Tract Infection

Publish Date:01-08-2023

IIT Guwahati Researchers develop 3D printed cost-effective device for rapid diagnosis of Urinary Tract Infection

  • ⮚ The device can measure and identify the type of bacteria in a UTI suspected patient in 5 minutes compared to conventional detection, which uses urine culture that requires a few days
  • ⮚ The Prototype device is cost effective and will be useful for rural areas where most UTI cases remain undetected due to lack of adequate testing facilities
  • ⮚ The developed prototype is generic and hence, the process is tunable to identify different types of bacteria

Video links :


GUWAHATI, 1st August 2023: Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati (IIT Guwahati) Research team led by Dr. Partho Sarathi Gooh Pattader have developed a fast, accurate, and reliable device to detect specific bacteria that cause Urinary Tract infection (UTI).

The estimated cost of manufacturing the device is Rs 608 while testing a single sample will cost Rs. 8 only.

The details of the Point-Of-Care testing (POCT) prototype have been published in reputed peer-reviewed journal ACS Applied Bio Materials. The paper may be accessed at The paper was co-authored by Mr. Aniruddha Deb, Dr. Partho Sarathi Gooh Pattader, Prof. Tapas K Mandal from IIT Guwahati and Dr. Swapnil Sinha and Ms. Mousumi Gogoi from Altanostic Lab Private Limited, IITG Research Park.

An UTI is a common health issue worldwide including in India. It is prevalent in females especially during pregnancy and is caused by various bacteria. The most common symptom of UTI is burning or pain when urinating along with a strong urge to urinate frequently. This can result in serious health problems if the infection spreads to the kidneys. In many rural areas, UTI cases remain undetected due to lack of adequate infrastructure, high cost of testing and time

The conventional way to diagnose and detect the specific bacteria is by urine culture, which takes a minimum of two days. Without knowing the specific bacteria responsible for the infection, doctors cannot administer antibiotics to treat the UTI. This delay in detection creates a problem as the patient has to suffer till the cause of UTI is detected and the situation could be fatal in some cases.

Explaining the significance of their Research which can provide a life-saving solution, Dr. Partho Sarathi Gooh Pattader, Associate Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering, IIT Guwahati said, “Early-stage detection of UTI is important to provide timely treatment. The Point-Of-Care Testing (POCT) prototype developed at IIT Guwahati is a photodetector that detects and quantifies a specific UTI-causing bacteria called ‘Klebsiella pneumoniae’ within five minutes from a patient’s urine sample. The detection of ‘Klebsiella pneumoniae’ is important not only because this bacteria is responsible for UTI, but also for pneumonia and for the infection of soft tissue”

This research was funded by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB), Department of Science and Technology (DST) and Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY), Government of India.

Elaborating on the mechanism, Dr Pattader further said, “We have used gold nanoparticles with specifically-engineered aptamers. An aptamer is like a 3D puzzle piece that fits only on the surface of a particular bacteria. The gold nanoparticles thus get agglomerated on the surface of the target bacteria giving out a unique signature that can be detected by a UV- Visible Spectrophotometer. "

The biosensor prototype detects a change in the intensity of light when the aptamer-gold nanoparticles-bacteria come together. The detection time is fast because the aptamer and bacteria instantly combine. The developed prototype is also generic, i.e. the process is tunable for different types of bacteria and can contribute significantly to primary healthcare.

Speaking on its end applications, Dr. Swapnil Sinha, Altanostic Lab Private Limited, IIT Guwahati Research Park and collaborator of this research said “We have demonstrated and validated the results obtained from our device with the hospital results following conventional methods. It matches very well. Thus, the technology can be optimized and transferred to a company for commercialization for the benefit of the society.”