Scientists Develop Portable, Rapid Urine Test for Amphetamines

Korean scientists have developed a portable, quick urine test for amphetamines, HealthDay reports.

“Breathalyzers are effective at catching drunk drivers on the spot, thereby preventing accidents,” researcher Ilha Hwang said. “We hope that our sensor may have a similar effect with people who abuse amphetamines.”

The test uses a wireless sensor and smartphone app, and can detect amphetamines in a drop of urine within seconds, the researchers report in the journal Chem. The device costs about $50 to produce.

“Conventional drug detection generally use techniques that require long operation time, sophisticated experimental procedures, and expensive equipment with well-trained professional operators,” co-senior author Joon Hak Oh said in a news release. “Moreover, they are not usually portable. Our method is a new type of drug sensor that can solve all these problems at once.”

Further testing in clinical settings is needed before the device can be marketed, Oh said.