Whenever oxygen supply is in danger, maintaining and restoring it is the primary focus of care. Patient monitoring systems provide doctors with information about oxygen supply. Cellular monitoring i.e., monitoring the actual oxygen availability in our cells and their energy use, has long been a wish of physicians and researchers. It is finally possible.
Mitochondria are the energy factories of our cells. Mitochondrial respiration converts nutrients and oxygen into energy for the cells. Adequate supply of oxygen to the mitochondria and a good function of these organelles are of vital importance. Mitochondrial function determines the development of many conditions such as metabolic disorders, diabetes, fatigue, cancer, and sepsis (bacterial blood poisoning).
Information on cellular activity enables better prognosis and control of treatments. The technique has the potential to provide essential information for several disciplines. The first clinical application is to provide guidance for the treatment of patients when the doctor needs to manage the supply of oxygen to tissue, e.g. with blood transfusions and other treatments in the intensive care.