A biological marker of sleep loss, whether that be a blood, saliva or breath, was the overarching goal of this biomarker discovery program. Our vision is to develop a biological test for sleep loss, akin to a breathalyser for fatigue to be deployed across occupational settings, including road safety.
The Metabolomics Biomarker Program was developed to determine if blood-based metabolites could detect how long an individual had been awake, and their associated alertness state. Led by Monash University, in collaboration with Metabolomics Australia, the world’s first blood-based marker for sleep loss was developed. This biomarker had an extremely high accuracy for detecting sleep loss (>99%).
Current phases of work are testing the utility of this biomarker in a variety of operational settings – such as objectively addressing the risks of impaired (fatigued) driving due to sleep loss or sleep disorders. Commercial opportunities now exist to develop biosensors and devices to accurately and objectively detect the impaired state in a variety of operational settings including workplaces and roadside fatigue testing.