Development of a metabolic tracker for the real-time measurement of lipolysis from capillary blood


Diet and physical activity are key drivers of an individual's health status, however there is no way to assess their effects individually and in real time. There are therefore many generic solutions that aim to fight overweight and promote well-being through diet and physical activity. However, all of the proposed solutions do not take into account the genetic and metabolic specificities of individuals, two specificities that play a major role in an organism's response to diet or physical activity.

Duration of Inovarion intervention

12 months


Scientific purposes

Develop methods for characterizing the metabolic status of an individual from a drop of blood by:

  • Validating biomarkers of metabolic activity, in particular lipolysis
  • Developing a method for measuring biomarkers of metabolic activity
  • Developing tools to measure biomarkers of metabolic activity


Uncertainties, difficulties and technological complexities

The work undertaken presented the following technological and conceptual uncertainties, difficulties and constraints:

  • The biosensor is a complex system with many components (enzymes, co-factors, membranes) generating a very large number of parameters to be managed during development.
  • Blood is a complex matrix that contains a large number of components, the quantity of which can vary considerably from one individual to another, or even for the same individual from one time to another. The sensor must therefore have a high specificity for the molecule to be assayed.
  • The molecule to be dosed is in limited concentration in the blood. The sensitivity and accuracy of the measurement with the biosensor must therefore be high.


Description of the work carried out

After identification of the most relevant biomarker, the work consisted in developing an electrochemical blood measurement. The enzyme system, the corresponding co-factors, the electrochemical mediator as well as the polymeric adjuvants and matrices were selected and their relative quantities optimized in order to maximize detection performance. Screen-printed electrodes have been developed to meet the requirements of biosensing. In particular, the conditions of depositing and drying of the reagent have been the subject of precise development.

The analytical performances achieved allow a sensitivity of 2 nA/µM of biomarker in the concentration range of interest and a measurement accuracy of around 5%. In addition, the matrix effect is very low with similar results between measurement in an ideal buffer medium and measurement in blood. Finally, the system was compared with the reference method for the measurement of this biomarker and a 99.7% correlation between the two methods was demonstrated.

In addition, a specific electronic reader has been developed and the industrial transfer of the device’s manufacturing has been initiated. The first in vitro tests were able to show the feasibility of monitoring lipolysis based on diet and physical activity.


Main results

The results obtained led to the filing of 2 patents: Method for monitoring an indicator of an individual’s physical state and monitoring device (FR3030757B1) and Electrochemical strips for monitoring the degradation of body fat and their preparation process (WO2019016451A1). An original article about the analytical performance of the device is in progress.