Ingestible Bioelectronics: A Packaged, Bio-Molecular, Fluorescence-Based Sensor Array with Ultra-Low-Power Wireless Interface

Ingestible electronics capable of laboratory quality bio-molecular analysis occupying pill-sized volume, operating at sub-mW with a robust wireless interface can transform medical diagnostics and personalized healthcare. Miniaturization of complex bio-molecular systems in such a volume is extremely challenging, notwithstanding a wireless interface that is capable of robust communication through inches of tissue. The paper presents a fully packaged biosensor system with Tx/Rx antennas coupled to a single CMOS chip that integrates a low-power wireless interface and a 15-pixel fluorescence biosensor array with on-chip nanoplasmonic optical filters. The IC, operating across multiple ISM/MICS bands, employs pulse-pause-encoded ASK/OOK modulation and achieves reception energy efficiency of 28 pJ/bit at 7 Mbps and -58 dBm of sensitivity with 196 µW of DC power. The entire bio-compatible package is miniaturized to a size of 1.2 × 2.5 cm². To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this work demonstrates for the first time a CMOS ICs with pM sensitivity in protein/DNA assays with wireless transmission capability through inches of tissue at state of the art energy efficiency.